Be SunSmart


Sunday, April 30th, 2017

It's the time of the year to get out there and get a gorgeous tan but what many people do not know are the hazards awaiting for them from our beloved warm sunrays.

The most dangerous hours are the mid-day hours where the sun is high in the sky so it's better to go out early or late in the day.

Snow, water and sand can reflect light onto your skin so even sitting in a shaded area for long hours can get you burned, so minimize the time of exposure.

Thick clouds can reduce UV radiation, but thin clouds do not provide much protection.

Sunburn, too much sun and tanning beds can increase the risk of melanoma and children are at higher risk than adults.

It is better to get a tan by exposing your skin for limited times over a period of 2 weeks than exposing your skin to UV radiation for many hours in one day.  In very fair-skinned people, UV radiation starts becoming harmful after about 5 to 10 minutes. While in dark skinned people it's about 30 minutes.

The following can help you determine what type of skin you have:

Skin type I:

Pale skin, freckles, burns very easily, hardly tans

Skin type II:

Pale skin tends to burn, only tans a little

Skin type III:

Occasional sunburn tans well

Skin type IV:

Rare sunburn, naturally dark skin

By Dr. Alya Al Shahbander

Specialist Dermatology