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Besides providing us with a wonderful tan, sunlight alsoprovides us with the harmful ultraviolet A or UVA and ultraviolet B or UVBrays. These may get quite harmful as they can be held responsible for thedevelopment of premature wrinkling, tissue damage, cell damage, rashes,sunburns and even skin cancer. Exposure to too much sun is actually what triggersall different types of skin changes which are commonly identified with aging.Tan is actually a skin of certain amount of skin damage, but not a lot ofpeople are aware of that. It occurs simply because when exposed to sunlight,the skin tends to produce additional pigment in order to protect itself. Thisis why exposure to sunlight always needs to be limited and it should alwaysoccur in the time of day when the sun is at its weakest. If one has to spendseveral hours in the sun, it is strongly advised to wear sunscreen andprotective clothing. One needs to be well aware of the fact that even sunscreenswith high SPF do not protect from all the harmful sun rays. Children should notbe exposed to the sun at all. Even though there is no sun, cloudy days alsocall for the use of sunscreens because the harmful ultraviolet rays can passthrough the clouds. There are also certain types of medicaments which mayincrease the skin’s sensitivity to the sun.

Statistical Data

According to certain statistics, 30 percent of adults in theUnited States commonly apply sunscreen when spending time out in the sun. 18percent of them reported that they use some sort of sun protective clothingwhen spending several hours out in the sun. Every third American citizenusually seeks shade when faced with excessive exposure to sunlight. It is important to stress out that women tendto use different methods of sun protection much more than men do. The situationis not that different among teenagers. There is also a significant percentageof teenagers who tend to use indoor tanning devices. Sunburns occur the most inwhite teens, and they are closely followed by Hispanic teens, Asian teens andAfrican American teens.

Sunscreens and Sun Protection Factor

There are sunscreens with different sun protection factorsor SPFs, but people usually tend to use those with a factor of 15 or even more.This number signifies the amount of time one may spend in the sun without beingburned. If a person spends ten minutes in the sun and then applies a sunscreenwith a sun protection factor of 15, he or she should be protected from the sunfor the next 150 minutes. Those who intend to spend a lot of time in the sun orwho are simply fair skinned should definitely use sunscreens with a higher sunprotection factor. Sunscreens can protect from ultraviolet B rays, but thereare no systems which may provide protection from the harmful ultraviolet Arays. One should be very careful when choosing a sunscreen because some of themmay be held responsible for the onset of allergic reactions. Sunscreen shouldalways be applied before going out and it needs to be reapplied after swimmingor heavy perspiration.

Sun-protective Clothing

Sun protective clothes may be also very helpful inprotecting the person from the harmful effects of the sunlight. All such itemshave a sun protection factor of at least 50 and are commonly made fromextremely durable fabrics which dry very quickly and are also characterized byexcellent shape retention. Legionnaire style, bucket or broad brim hats areexcellent for the sun protection for the ears, neck, head and the face. Asalready explained, sunscreens are of utmost important and they can be purchasedin various different forms such as pumps, tubes and roll on, among others.Sunglasses are an important part of sun protection because they protect the eyesfrom the harmful effects of sunlight and also provide better viewing clarity.There are also various different types of moisturizing lip glosses, lipsticks,natural cream foundations, tinted moisturizers, face creams and moisturizingbody lotions which may be of great help when it comes to protecting the personfrom the sun. Recent times have also seen the introduction of other helpfulproducts such as sun shelters and marquees. Another important part of sunprotection is car window tinting especially for those who spend a lot of timedriving or travelling in a car. The special types of window films are used forsuch purposes in order to block the penetration of as much harmful ultravioletrays as possible.

Special Precautions for Children

Infants who are less than one year old need to be kept outof direct sunlight at all times, since their skin can easily get irritated. Asthe child grows older, he or she needs to embrace all the rules of proper sunprotection which are normally applied to all adults.

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