While the field of dermatology treats issues affecting several parts of the body, including the scalp and nails, the average person is likely most familiar with skin dermatologists. Even if you have never struggled with acne or another skin condition, you have probably heard one of these doctors recommending that you take certain steps to protect your skin from the sun. By wearing sunscreen and appropriate clothing, for example, you can dramatically reduce your risk of developing skin cancer, signs of aging, and more. However, some skin dermatologists have recently pointed out that people may not be applying sunscreen correctly. Are you protecting your skin from the sun properly? Read on to find out.
Apply Sunscreen Early
Many dermatology and skin cancer specialists say that a lot of sun damage occurs because people forget to apply sunscreen until they are already outside; in some cases, people may not even remember until some time has passed. As a result, skin dermatologists recommend that patients apply sunscreen 30 minutes before they know they will go outside.
Re-Use Sunscreen Throughout the Day
Sunscreen must be reapplied throughout the day if it is to remain effective. Skin dermatologists therefore recommend that people add a layer of sunscreen every two hours they are outside. If you are swimming, however, you should reapply sunscreen as soon as you step out of the water.
Don’t Rely on Other People’s Sunscreen
A lot of people share their sunscreen, but while something is better than nothing, some products will be better for your unique complexion than others. Make sure you have a sunscreen with the right SPF rating for your skin on hand at all times.
Focus on Commonly-Forgotten Areas
When applying sunscreen, don’t forget to put product on the edges of the face, ears and toes, areas that are just as likely to burn but are often missed. Additionally, skin dermatologists recommend wearing sunglasses, hats, and long-sleeved shirts to further protect vulnerable areas, especially the eyes.
Visit a Dermatologist Clinic for Regular Appointments
To make sure any potential signs of skin cancer are detected early, patients should conduct regular self-exams and also schedule regular appointments with a dermatologist to check less visible areas, such as the back. If you notice any changes to your skin, you should also schedule an appointment immediately so that your dermatologist can examine it.
Based on the steps above, are you applying sunscreen correctly? Start following these tips to reduce your risk of developing skin cancer and other sun-related skin problems.