Summer is once again upon the Western NY area, and that means it’s time to start thinking about the importance of protecting your skin. While many individuals already have a basic understanding of UV rays, there are plenty of misconceptions and unknown factors that need to be addressed if you’re seeking the highest level of protection. Among the most important, there are many types of Ultraviolet rays, though UVA and UVB are the most commonly discussed.

UVA rays penetrate the skin deeply, which can lead to sunspots and premature aging. UVB rays, however, affect the skin’s outer layers and are responsible for sunburns, blistering and various forms of skin cancer. Knowing the difference and how to protect yourself from both is a smart way to keep your skin safe in the summer, and all year long.

Understanding Harmful UV Rays and Protecting Your Skin
Here are a just a handful of things you might not know about UV rays, as well as how they affect the integrity of your skin and some of the lesser-known, but very significant sources.

  • UVA and UVB rays reflect off of surfaces such as pavement, sand, glass and mirrors
  • Fluorescent lighting emits high levels of UV and can burn skin at the cellular level
  • Blue light from many electronics can increase your exposure to damaging UV rays
  • Dryness and weakened skin barriers can make skin more vulnerable to UV damage
  • Sunscreen isn’t only for outdoors, and can offer increased protection while inside
  • It only takes a few minutes of high-UV exposure to burn or damage healthy skin

When it comes to protecting your skin against the damage caused by exposure to UV radiation, there are number of things you can do. First, always choose a broad spectrum sunscreen and consider wearing it indoors if you’re vulnerable, or in a UV-prone environment. If you wear makeup, choose products that contain SPF whenever possible. Outdoors, be sure to stay covered and wear light, loose-fitting clothing. Finally, give yourself a break from the TV, computers, phones, tablets and other blue light-emitting electronics from time to time.

For more information on protecting yourself from UV rays this summer, and throughout the entire year, get in touch with Helendale Dermatology in Rochester, NY. We can be reached by phone at 585-266-5420 or write to us through our contact page.