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Is the Sun Really That Bad?

In recent years, we’ve heard repeatedly that we should avoid the sun to prevent skin aging and skin cancers. However, is this the whole story when it comes to understanding the benefits of sunshine?

Benefits of Sunshine

Science has shown that we shouldn’t underestimate the sun’s effects on mood, sleep, and Vitamin D production. Healthy Vitamin D levels protect bones and reduce fragility. Emerging research suggests sunshine’s potential to reduce the risk of various conditions, including diabetes, multiple sclerosis, high blood pressure, heart disease, and some cancers.

While there’s debate on how sunshine provides these benefits, the prevailing theory is that it positively influences the immune system and blood pressure.

Benefits of Sunshine

Risks of Excessive Sun Exposure

Despite these potential benefits, excessive sun exposure, especially sunburn, increases the risk of skin cancers, including the most serious form, melanoma. Light-skinned individuals, those with red or blond hair, pale-colored eyes, multiple moles, and those who burn easily should take sensible precautions. Parents and schools should protect children during outdoor activities with wide-brimmed sun hats, protective clothing, shade, and SPF 30+ UVA-rated sunscreen applied generously every two hours and after sweating or swimming.

Risks of Excessive Sun Exposure

Do You Have Darker Skin?

For those with very dark or black skin, excessive sunscreen use may need caution to prevent Vitamin D deficiency. Consider a Vitamin D supplement if necessary.

Preventing Vitamin D Deficiency

Regular Mole Checks:

One crucial aspect of sun safety that often goes overlooked is the importance of regular mole checks. Monitoring your moles and keeping an eye out for any changes or unusual developments is a proactive step in skin health. We recommend conducting at-home mole checks once a month to stay vigilant. Additionally, it’s advisable to schedule professional mole checks with our expert dermatologists once a year for a comprehensive evaluation.

At Freyja Medical, our expert dermatologists offer comprehensive mole checks and are equipped to provide safe and effective skin surgery options if any abnormalities are detected.

Click here to access our free downloadable at-home mole check guide.

Click here to learn more about our expert care.

Benefits of Sunshine, Regular Mole Checks

So, What Does This Mean in Practice?

The question arises: have we become too paranoid about sun harm? In our indoor-focused lifestyles, we may underestimate the amount of sunlight needed for health.

Notably, the health benefits of sunshine seem to come primarily from longer UVA wavelengths, while the risk of skin cancer is associated with shorter UVB wavelengths. Since sunscreens are generally better at protecting against UVB, we can spend more time outdoors safely with sensible precautions. However, be vigilant about any changing moles or unusual skin blemishes and consult your doctor promptly.

Mole Checks at Freyja Medical

Final Thoughts About the Sun & You…

The take-home message? Don’t fear the sun, but use sunscreen, be sensible, and avoid overexposure. Now, we eagerly await summer’s arrival!

Benefits of Sunshine