downloadSpring is finally here, and it is finally time for those outdoor activities that we have longed for all winter long. Since the weather is getting warmer and the sun is getting stronger, many people want to protect their skin from the sun while still getting a nice tan too. The problem is that many people do not know what a good balance is between too much sun, too little sun, or when they should put sunblock on in the first place.

For starters, there are two different types of exposures to the sun, incidental and intense exposure. Incidental exposure is when a person is only outside for a few minutes at a time, while intense exposure is when you are outside for a long period of time. For incidental exposure the right amount of sunblock is SPF 15. This takes away about 93% of the UV radiation that your skin would be exposed too. For intense exposure, a water-resistant sunscreen should be used with at least 30 SPF or higher. SPF will block about 97% of the UV radiation, while SPF 50 will block out about 98% of UV radiation.

What SPF should be used for children? Children have more sensitive skin than adults so it is important to get the right sunblock that does not have certain chemicals in them. PABA and oxybenzone are two chemicals that are found in sun block that are known to irritate sensitive skin. Finding a sun block with zinc oxide and titanium dioxide will be best for children, and is often found in sunblock for babies.

People that are more prone to allergies of the skin should avoid using any sunblock with PABA and oxybenzone as well. Gel formula sunblock is found to be best for people with allergies.

For those who have dry skin, moisturizing sunscreens are right for you. These sunscreens can both protect you from the sun and help cure your dry skin at the same time. It’s a win-win!

If you have a family history of skin cancer or have very fair skin should use 30+ SPF sunscreen. Since we do not necessarily put enough on to reach the wanted SPF, sunblock should be reapplied frequently.

For darker skin tones, it is recommended to use and SPF 15+ whether you burn or not.

Older people tend to believe that they do not need sunblock because of their age and how much exposure they have received in their lifetime but this is not true. Elderly people should still use the recommended amount of sunscreen to protect themselves from UV rays. Spray-on sunscreen may be the easiest for those have decreased mobility.

East Northport Medical Care is available to provide the best medical services in Suffolk County. From Primary Care, Urgent Care, Cosmetic Services, Physical Therapy, and Nutrition Services, to get the best treatment available, call (631) 368-9166.