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What’s your SPF number?

Long gone are the summer days of lying out at the Jersey shore with a bottle of baby oil and iodine. Sunscreen, what was that? The whole reason to be outside was to get tanned. The darker the better. My, my have things changed. Today I would not think of leaving the house without sunscreen.

 

What is SPF? (Sun Protection Factor)

 

SPF is the measurement of time the sunscreen can protect you from sunburn vs. not wearing any protection. Wearing an SPF of 15 means it will take 15 times longer for your skin to burn than not wearing sunscreen. An SPF of 15 will also filter out 93% of UVB rays while an SPF of 30 filters out 97%

Generally speaking, a broad spectrum SPF of 30 is a good rule of thumb for most adults.

Sunscreens come in many formulas, waterproof, sport, sensitive and oily skin formulas to name a few. Pick the one that best suits your activity.

Special formulas are made for babies and very young children; speak to your pediatrician to make sure your child is properly protected.

 

Here are some other general tips when it comes to spending time outside:

 

Don’t be fooled, even in the shade; indirect UVA rays can still cause skin damage.

Always apply your sunscreen 15 minutes before you head outside.

Re-apply every 2 hours or after swimming, exercising and toweling off.

Make sure to use enough each time, about 1 ounce per application.

The sun is strongest between 10am and 4pm so limit your outdoor activities during that time.

Wear a wide-brimmed hat, UV filter sunglasses and lip balm with SPF.

Wear UPF (ultraviolet Protection Factor) clothing. Bright colored, tight-knit clothing is the best.

“Sun Guard” laundry additive by Rit, claims to wash UPF 30 sun protection into everyday clothing and last for 20 washings

Stay hydrated, to avoid heat stroke, heat exhaustion, and dehydration.

Finally, certain medications—such as antibiotics or products with retinol—can make your skin more sensitive to the effects of sunlight. Avoid the sun while taking these medications.

 

If you want a sun-kissed look, avoid the sun (and the baby oil) instead; try one of the many self-tanning products on the market.

 

Love the skin you’re in, it needs to last you a lifetime.

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Charlotte Dentistry®
Armstrong & Eshleman, PA

201 Providence Road
Charlotte, NC 28207
704-376-6470
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Monday thru Friday: 8am - 5pm
Saturday: 8am - 1pm

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