Jun 01

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Are Sunscreens really required?

We always keep on hearing “apply sunscreen before you go in sun”, but is it really important? do sunscreens really work?


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Here is what our dermatologist, says “Sunscreens or sunblocks are the agents which protect the skin from sunlight. Two types of agents reflectors and absorbers can act as sunscreens. Reflectors stay on the skin surface and reflect the sun rays in other direction and thus stops the rays entering the skin. Absorbers on the other hand absorb the sunlight and therefore are active against a specific spectrum of sunlight. Most of the sunscreen act as reflectors or are the combination of reflectors and absorbers. Sunscreen has to be applied only as long as there is daylight, not during night. Moreover the effect of a topical sunscreen does not last for more than few hours. So the recommended application of sunscreen in a day are three.

First one after the morning bath. around 8 am Second- mid day , around 12 Third- around 4pm. An additional application is useful before going outdoor during the day.”

Another recommendation are from Medical organizations such as the American Cancer Societywhich recommend the use of sunscreen because it aids in the prevention of developing skin cancer (squamous cell carcinomas and basal-cell carcinomas.)

Today most of the products available in market products have sunscreen to protect lightened skin because light skin is more susceptible to sun damage than darker skin.Normally we judge sunscreens by their Sun Protection Factor (SPF) number. Its SPF tells how much protection a product provides against sunburn. The higher the number,the greater the protection. An SPF of at least 15 is recommended. Products with SPF 30 provide high protection against sunburn. The FDA states that products with SPF above 30 provide a benefit that is not much greater than SPF 30 products.

While buying sunscreens don’t just check the SPF factor but make sure that the product can block UVA and UVB radiations. UVA radiations does not cause sunburn but can increase the rate of melanoma, another kind of skin cancer, and photodermatitis. UVA radiation causes skin damage, premature aging, and skin reactions to medications, soaps, cosmetics, and other chemicals. UVB radiation causes sunburn. Both UVA and UVB radiation increase risk of skin cancer. The use of broad-spectrum (UVA/UVB) sunscreens can address this concern.

So with High SPF your product should protect against UVA and UVB radiations.

Benefits of sunscreen if applied diligently

Sunblocks can slow or temporarily prevent the development of wrinkles and sagging skin, prevent sunburn and premature aging (e.g., wrinkles, leathery skin),prevent skin cancer, prevents pigmentation, skin darkness.

Is sunscreen required indoor?

O yes, Remember you can not outsmart sun, you need a sunscreen there is no excuses for Skipping Sunscreen. Damaging rays can easily  penetrate glass  so you’re not protected in the car or in a room, sitting by a window.


Kids do require Sunscreens-  Whether your child is at the beach or in the backyard, sunscreen is a must. Look for one with an SPF of at least 30 that screens out both UVA and UVB rays. Use sunscreen  every time your child goes outside. For the best protection, apply sunscreen generously 30 minutes before going outdoors. Don’t forget to protect ears, noses, lips, and the tops of feet.

Take sunscreen with you to reapply during the day, especially after your child swims or exercises. This applies to waterproof and water-resistant products as well. Whether is summer,winter,Cool or cloudy? Children still need protection. UV rays, not the temperature, do the damage. Clouds do not block UV rays, they filter them—and sometimes only slightly.

most sun damage occurs before age 18.Sun damage doesn’t just stop when you turn 18. You have to wear sunscreen every day for life.

So get serious about sun safety apply sunscreens generously.

How to apply sunscreen?

Normally direction to use the product is mentioned on the box or bottle but otherwise the way to use is to apply sunscreen generously to all exposed skin 30 minutes before sun exposure. As a general guide, use 1 ounce (30 grams) to cover your entire body. Reapply the sunscreen after swimming or sweating or drying off with a towel or if it has rubbed off. If you are outside for long periods, reapply sunscreen every 2 hours. If you are using the lip balm form, apply to the lip area only.

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