Sun damage can be an unsightly and embarrassing situation. Embracing the sun is an excellent way for our bodies to produce vitamin D and other nutrients from the sun’s UV rays, but when careless, it always comes with some consequence. The powerful rays of the sun can lead to wrinkles, dark spots, and other forms of skin discoloration that can make you look and feel older than you are. Spending time in the sun can harm your skin over time, but once the damage is done, can it truly be reversed? Some experts believe that while not all sun damage will be able to disappear completely, there are ways to protect your skin and prevent further sun damage over time.
How Sun Damage Is Long Term
Sun damage often occurs during childhood, when children and adolescents would play out in the sunshine for long periods without much of an emphasis on sunscreen. Sun damage often develops over time and can take years for its side effects to develop fully. The initial burn and tan from the sun are considered to be the first sign of sun damage. Also referred to as sun aging or photoaging, the sun’s UV rays prematurely damage the skin down to the cellular level, and because it happens at the deepest layer of the skin, it can take years for that damage to develop.
Sun damage can cause freckles, moles, uneven tone complexion, and excessively dry skin. All of these side effects are the result of DNA-altering damage that persists for years. Studies from Yale University found that sunlight damage can continue to affect your skin even beyond staying indoors as the damage from the UV rays can linger beyond first exposure. This damage is also known to be a major cause of skin cancer and can lead to an overproduction of melanin which then leads to dark spots and hyperpigmentation. Having these variances in skin tone and texture can increase your risk for certain diseases, and one of the best ways to avoid sun damage is to use preventative measures to protect your skin from UV damage.
Tips To Prevent Sun Damage During Summer
We highly recommend seeking treatment from a dermatologist or a facial plastic surgeon to help address these issues with skin tone and texture and help prevent the onset of skin cancer. However, there are many ways you can prevent skin damage during the summer. Some tips that can be used to treat sun damage include:
- Wear Sunscreen: As one of the best preventative measures, wearing sunscreen above 30 SPF will be able to reduce the amount of UV ray damage and prevent any further damage from happening.
- Chemical Peels: Chemical peels can provide ways of removing dead skin cells from the upper layers of the skin, helping produce collagen and revitalize skin growth.
- Skin-lightening Creams: For dark age spots, products containing hydroquinone can lighten these spots and remove them completely.
- Retinoid Creams: Retinoid creams aim to remove wrinkles and speed up the shedding process of dead skin cells.
- Laser Therapy: Laser therapy uses short pulses of concentrated light to remove layers of skin and reveal fresh, newer layers of skin underneath.
For more information about treating sun damage, visiting your dermatologist or facial surgeon can provide you with more effective ways of treating this damage and protecting yourself from skin cancer.