The sun is a big part of our lives. Whether or not you live in a warm climate, chances are that you spend a large portion of your time exposed to the sun's ultraviolet (UV) rays. While some amount of sun exposure is healthy, too much can lead to sun damaged skin.
A golden color of your skin that everyone loves is due to an injury to the top layer of the skin. When your skin turns red, feels hot to touch and become sensitive, there is no guessing – you sustained a first-degree sunburn. Continuous exposure to ultraviolet (UV) rays will damage deep layers of your skin, resulting in second-degree sunburn. It's usually more painful with significant redness, swelling and blisters formation.
Over the years, too much sun causes your skin to age prematurely. Your skin tone becomes uneven, age spots more prominent, scaly patches of actinic keratosis start to form, gradually progressing to skin cancer. Latest studies on the effects of sun on skin have shown that ultraviolet rays damage DNA in skin cells long after UV exposure, which can lead to skin cell mutations that cause melanoma, the most aggressive and deadliest skin cancer.
These symptoms of sun damage may come together, or you may merely experience one of them. The most common sun damage symptoms include:
Preventive measures are often the first line of defense against sun damage. People can protect themselves by wearing protective clothing and sunscreens with SPF 30 or higher, limiting sun exposure and staying out of tanning beds. Interventions for sun damaged skin include variety of treatments from daily use of topical creams and gels to laser treatments.
The only way to determine which skin treatment is right for you is to schedule a consultation with a medical professional.
If you are suffering from sun damaged skin it may be time to consider treatment. For more information or to schedule your appointment please call (570) 354-0420.