Ultraviolet (UV) rays are an invisible form of radiation. They can pass through your skin and damage your skin cells. Sunburns are a sign of skin damage. Suntans aren't healthy, either. They appear after the sun's rays have already killed some cells and damaged others. UV rays can cause skin damage during any season or at any temperature. They can also cause eye problems, wrinkles, skin spots, and skin cancer.
To protect yourself :
- Stay out of the sun when it is strongest (between 10 a.m. and 2 p.m.)
- Use sunscreen with an SPF of 15 or higher
- Wear protective clothing
- Wear wraparound sunglasses that provide 100% UV ray protection
- Avoid sunlamps and tanning beds
Check your skin regularly for changes in the size, shape, color, or feel of birthmarks, moles, and spots. Such changes are a sign of skin cancer.
Food and Drug Administration
Prevention and Risk Factors
- Protecting Yourself from Sun Exposure (National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health) - PDF Also in Spanish
- Sun Safety (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention) Also in Spanish
- Sunscreen: How to Help Protect Your Skin from the Sun (Food and Drug Administration)
- Tips to Stay Safe in the Sun: From Sunscreen to Sunglasses (Food and Drug Administration) Also in Spanish
- Sunburn (VisualDX)
Journal Articles References and abstracts from MEDLINE/PubMed (National Library of Medicine)
- Article: Flower Extracts from Ornamental Plants as Sources of Sunscreen Ingredients: Determination...
- Article: Sunscreen Ingredient Octocrylene's Potency to Disrupt Vitamin D Synthesis.
- Article: Influence of Social and Psychosocial Factors on Summer Vacationers' Sun Protection...
- Sun Exposure -- see more articles
- Health Effects of Too Much Sun (Department of Health and Human Services, Office on Women's Health)