Finally, spring has sprung and we are making the transition into summer.
The 2008 spring semester is drawing towards a close, and soon people everywhere will be able relax and enjoy their summer vacation.
One of the most popular things to do in the summer is to enjoy the weather outside. Be it a trip to the beach, a day at the park, or your neighborhood pool, its hard to resist taking pleasure in the sun.
While suntans are attractive, they can also be very dangerous to your skin. Here are a few tips to help keep you protected during the most delightful months of the year.
Research has discovered ultraviolet light rays emitted by the sun are the source of both beneficial and harmful effects on humans. UV rays trigger the production of Vitamin D within people, and have also been used to treat skin disorders such as psoriasis.
The Earth's atmosphere blocks UV rays by up to 98.7 per cent, however that is not enough to protect you from their harmful effects.
Most common of all is a sunburn, and can range from mild and irritating, to severe accompanied by excruciating pain. The UV rays cause direct DNA damage within the body, which is repaired and corrected with increased melanin levels. Over exposure to the UV rays can also induce a deadly form of cancer called malignant melanoma.
The most direct and potent levels of UV rays are found between 10 A.M. and 4 P.M. It is especially important for those out during these times protect themselves by wearing light clothing that covers the skin as well as sunscreen.
The benefits of sunscreen have been incredibly well proven. Wearing a broad-spectrum sunscreen, or one that protects against both UVA and UVB rays, drastically reduces the harmful effects caused by the sun.
Remember to apply liberally shortly before you will be exposed to the sun, and frequently throughout the day. Swimming, exercising, and sweating will cause the sun block to lose its efficiency and therefore should be regularly reapplied.
Antibiotics have been found to increase skin's sensitivity to the sun. It is even more important to shield yourself if you are on certain medications and, by talking to your doctor, you can formulate a plan for your protection.
These simple preventative measures can save you from agonizing pain and misery associated with sun burned skin. Taking a few precautions before heading outside considerably diminishes your risk of dangerous and potentially life threatening skin conditions later in life.
Now get out there and catch some rays!