Hidden Sun Risks

April 12, 2012

Sitting by the pool or lying on a beach aren't the only times to safeguard your skin. Don't forget the sunscreen in these situations:

Your cummute
Your skin is exposed to the sun in your car-and expert are seeing an increase in skin issues they suspect are driving related. "I often notice more fine lines, precancerous and even cancerous spots on the left side of patients' faces than the right for this reason," says D'Anne Kleinsmith, MD, a dermatologist in Bloomfield Hills, MI, and spokeswoman for the American Academy of Dermatology.

Working indoors
UVA rays come in through windows, and if you're in a room with a lot of sunlight, there's a good chance the rays will reflect off other surfaces as well. Plus, "many environmentally friendly light bulbs also emit small amounts of UVA rays, which means that the cumulative daily exposure can affect your skin over time," says Dr. Franks.

A windy day
In general, you should slather on the sunscreen every two hours outdoors. But if you're swimming, sweating during exercise or relaxing on a boat on a windy day, reapply hourly. Wind wears away sunscreen just as water and perspiration do, says Rebecca Baxt, MD, a dermatologist and assistant professor of clinical dermatology at New York University.


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