TAKE CARE: Summer Skin Savers

Woman on the BeachIn a perfect world, summer means perfectly bronzed skin from head to toe. But we know better than to lie out and bake until the sun goes down. In addition to running the risk of contracting skin cancer, too much sun exposure can lead to early wrinkles and dry, leathery skin. So this summer we’re taking precautions.

Wellness Expert Dr. John Pierce Wellness Expert Dr. John Pierce has some suggestions to help keep you looking young and healthy. And topping his list is limiting sun exposure.

“Sun exposure can increase the rate of skin wrinkling, dark aging marks, and skin cancer, all of which are negative tendencies and health concerns related to overexposure and premature aging,” says Dr. Pierce. “It’s crucial to protect your skin on a daily basis to maintain healthy, youthful looking skin.”

–     Protective Clothing: The clothes you wear on a daily basis can reduce the effect of the sun’s rays on your body. Outdoor enthusiasts should look for clothing containing a high Ultraviolet Protection Factor (UPF). Similar to Sun Protection Factor (SPF), UPF demonstrates how effectively fabrics shield skin from ultraviolet rays. The higher the UPF number the better protection.

–     Hats: While all skin is subject to damage from sun exposure, the skin on the face and surrounding area is typically more sensitive. A wide-brimmed hat can protect both the neck and face.

Woman Sunning on the Sand–     Sunscreen: Sunscreen should be used on a daily basis, regardless of intended sun exposure, to protect skin. When spending an extended period of time in the sun, reapply sunscreen of at least SPF 15 often. Look for sunscreens that protect against both ultraviolet A and B radiation for complete protection against aging and wrinkling of the skin, and of course, sunburn.

–     Vitamin D Supplements: One major benefit of spending time in the sun is the natural exposure to vitamin D, which helps strengthen bones. Vitamin D is available in supplement form and is a great alternative to sun exposure, especially for individuals with sensitive skin.

*As with any medical recommendation, be sure to talk to your doctor before starting any vitamin or supplement regimen.

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