With the warmer weather approaching we are all looking forward to spending time outdoors. It helps us get crucial amounts of Vitamin D and aids in depression. However, it’s important to be careful in the sun as sun damage can lead to melanoma (skin cancer).
Protecting your aging skin from the sun means you have to be diligent with products and clothing that will put a barrier between your skin and the sun’s damaging rays. As we age our skin becomes more vulnerable to sun damage and doesn’t heal as quickly as it did when we were younger.
What can we do to protect our skin from the sun?
- Start using more sunscreen. Seniors need a larger amount of sunscreen since their skin gets damaged more easily.
- Make sure your sunscreen is water-resistant and a broad-spectrum product that will protect against both UVA and UVB. Check that is has an SPF of 30 or higher and reapply throughout the day, especially after swimming.
- Don’t forget to apply sunscreen on any balding areas of your head and also use lip balm with an SPF of 30 or higher.
- Don’t tan. Tanning is damage to the skin and a sunburn means that you have sustained extreme skin damage.
- Always use a moisturizer on your skin. As we age our skin is more prone to dryness. Sun damage can worsen this.
- Wear UV-filtering sunglasses, protective clothing and broad brimmed hats. Long sleeved shirts and long pants in a light weight fabric are best.
- Limit your time in the sun. If you are gardening or spending time outdoors try to do it before 10 A.M. or after 4 P.M. when the sun’s rays aren’t as strong.
We all enjoy days spent outdoors in the warmer weather. Take care of yourself. Spend the day under an umbrella or on a shady verandah where you can relax outside and still protect yourself from the sun.
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