Effects of Sun Exposure on Skin

Effects of Sun Exposure on Skin

The sun is a great source of energy - but it's not always so nice to our skin. Overtime, sun exposure can lead to –premature skin aging and other damage caused by the sun’s UV rays.

Time Spent Outdoors

Even when it's cloudy and you're outside you're getting exposure to the sun’s UV rays. Even if for a brief period of time, exposure can lead to premature aging of the skin and increase the risk of skin cancer. .

In fact, many negative effects of aging come from sun exposure. These detrimental effects include:

  • Premature aging, which over time can make the skin become thick, wrinkled and leathery. Since it occurs gradually, often manifesting itself many years after the majority of a person’s sun exposure, premature aging is often regarded as unavoidable, normal part of growing older. However, up to 90 percent of the visible skin changes commonly attributed to aging are caused by the sun. http://www.epa.gov/sites/production/files/documents/healtheffects_1.pdf
  • Both UVA and UVB rays contribute to sun-induced skin cancer.
  • Weaken immune system and may also cause eye problems

    Minimizing the Effects of Sun Exposure

    Those who protect their skin consistently from a young age are more likely to enjoy more youthful, healthy skin than their peers when they are 40, 50 and into their golden years.

    Still, it's never too late to start practicing good skin practices. The American Academy of Dermatology recommends daily use of a broad spectrum sunscreen with an SPF of15 or higher regularly and as directed. If you buy a moisturizer that contains an SPF of 15, you will be more protected from the sun, than if the product did not have SPF. Apply sunscreen on any exposed skin that is not covered by clothing, and re-apply at least every couple of hours - especially if you're sweating or doing a water sport. Many skincare products and makeup products contain an SPF, which can help prevent premature aging of the skin due to sun exposure.