As the winter months approach and temperatures drop, your trusted dermatologist Castle Rock CO will still recommend the use of sunscreen, especially on cold, sunny days, when the sun’s UV rays are strong. While this advice might seem counterintuitive, experts believe sunscreen is just as important during the winter months as it is during the summer.
Relevant Reasons for Using Sunscreen in Winter
When we think of sunscreen, we think hot days on the beach or by the pool. In reality, the temperature has little to do with the intensity of the sun’s rays. Even in cold weather, UV rays penetrate through the atmosphere on a clear day. Dermatologists warn that sunburns are still a very real danger in winter and that it could lead to the development of skin cancer, among other skin-related issues. Additionally, participating in popular winter activities in areas of higher altitude, where sun exposure is more intense, can increase your chances of developing a sunburn.
It is also important to know that ice and snow will reflect UV rays back at you from below. In places where winter sports are popular, it is essential to apply proper sunscreen, as avoiding direct sun exposure will not be enough to achieve adequate protection.
Failing to use sunscreen properly may lead not only to a greater risk of skin cancer, but also to premature aging of the skin, increased sagging and wrinkle development, and a greater chance of skin damage.
What Type of Sunscreen Coverage to Aim for
To prevent sunburn, it’s essential to use the correct type of sunscreen. Depending on your skin type, your local certified dermatologist in Castle Rock will likely recommend a sunscreen lotion with an SPF of 30 or higher. The lotion would typically need to be applied about 15 minutes before exposure, then reapplied once every two hours.
Sun-protective clothing such as long-sleeved shirts and wide-brimmed hats are also recommended. However, experts warn that these items should not be used as a replacement for sunscreen.