Are you looking forward to sunrise? Expose yourself in a safe way!

If the winter is long for us, surely this year it will be even longer due to the situation of confinement we are experiencing. Most people wish the sun would come out and go out to breathe that feeling of freedom that we miss so much these days….
And what about sun exposure?
Sun exposure has a positive effect on our mood, helps in the synthesis of vitamin D in our skin and can even help in the treatment of some skin diseases such as atopic dermatitis or psoriasis. However, it can also have negative consequences both in the short term, in the form of sunburn, as well as in the long term, as it is involved in aging and the development of skin cancers.

To enjoy the benefits of sun exposure while minimizing the negative effects it can produce, you should take these measures into account:

– Gradual exposure to the sun: start with a few minutes a day, and gradually increase the exposure time.
– Avoid direct sun exposure during the central hours of the day, between 12:00 and 17:00 hours.
– Keep in mind that sand, water or snow reflect part of the solar radiation that falls on them. Don’t rely on cloudy days either: solar radiation filters through clouds.
– Apply sunscreens with a protection factor of 30 or higher. They should be reapplied every two to three hours, and also after bathing or sweating.
– Don’t forget the other sunscreens that are not in the form of a cream: sunglasses, a hat and appropriate clothing. As for clothing, those with dense weaves and dark colors will offer greater protection, but if they are damp, they will lose some of their filtration capacity.
– For adequate vitamin D synthesis, sun exposure of about 15 minutes a day, three days a week, on areas such as the arms and legs, is sufficient. But remember the first step: make a gradual exposure.
– In the event of suspicious lesions on the skin that evolve in size, color or shape, consult your dermatologist.

Dr. Bárbara Vázquez