The Times West Virginian

July 15, 2013

Protecting skin from sun, insects and plants crucial in summertime

By Emily Gallagher
Times West Virginian

FAIRMONT — Warmer weather often makes people want to do more activities outside, and there are numerous ways to protect your skin from exposure to sun, bugs and poisonous plants.

Dr. Jeff Dodson, a dermatologist at Mountain State Dermatology, said one thing people should protect themselves from is the sun.

Dodson said skin has a greater chance of becoming sunburned during the middle of the day between the hours of 10 a.m. and 4 p.m. He said on overcast days when the sun is hidden behind clouds, protection is still needed.

“UV light can penetrate clouds so protection is just as important,” Dodson said.

Dodson said sunscreen and clothing are key to protect skin from the sun. He said there are sunscreens and clothing that can provide a sun protection factor (SPF).

“A regular T-shirt is not sufficient,” he said. “There is clothing you can buy that is SPF-certified that is good for daily use and swimming.”

Dodson said it is important to protect skin from the sun because of the ultraviolet (UV) light the sun gives off. He said sunscreen with at least 30 SPF should be used.

“UV light from the sun has been proven in numerous studies to increase the risk of skin cancer, which includes malignant melanoma,” Dodson said. “SPF of sunscreen should be at least 30 and should have either zinc oxide or titanium dioxide.”


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