Shining a Light on Sunscreen

In recent years, skin cancer has been on the rise, and it has become more important for us to protect our bodies from the sun’s harmful rays. But how much do you know about sunscreen and sun protection? While the use of sunscreen on exposed skin as protection is common knowledge, the details sometimes get fuzzy. Learn more about how you can protect your skin, and spread the knowledge to your church and faith community!

Sunscreen Know-how for Your Church

  1. The sun’s rays include ultraviolet A (UVA) and ultraviolet B (UVB) rays. Sunscreen Sun Protection Factor (SPF) measures the lotion’s ability to block UVB rays only. To make sure your sunscreen blocks UVA rays, as well, look for the words “broad spectrum” on your lotion bottle.
  2. Sunscreens with zinc oxide are recommended because they block both UVA and UVB rays.
  3. Seek shade where available. Keep in mind the sun’s rays are usually strongest between 10:00 a.m. and 2:00 p.m.
  4. Water and sand both reflect the sun’s damaging rays, so use extra caution when out at the beach.
  5. An SPF number does not constitute how many minutes you can be out in the sun. The number designates the length of time you can be out in the sun before you get sunburned. For example, an SPF of 30 means you can be out in the sun 30 times longer than if you had no sunscreen on without getting burned.
  6. For the sunscreen to be effective, you need to use an ounce for exposed areas.
  7. Use sunscreen every day you’re outside, year-round. Even on cloudy days, the sun’s rays can pierce through with up to 80 percent efficacy.
  8. Typically, an adult should use a water-resistant, broad spectrum, SPF 30 or higher sunscreen and reapply every two hours or so.

Learn more about sunscreen and skin care at the American Academy of Dermatology’s website, aad.org.
Source: American Academy of Dermatology

 

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