Effect Of Sun On Skin

Effect Of Sun On Skin

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    Sunlight consists of two main types of ultraviolet (UV) rays that damage skin -- UVA and UVB rays. UVB rays are the main cause of sunburn and skin cancer. This type of sunlight intensifies during the summer and can do more damage more quickly than UVA rays. The epidermis absorbs most of the intensity of UVB rays. UVB rays cannot pass through glass, although UVA rays can. UVC rays, another spectrum in sunlight, are also potentially harmful, but the ozone layer blocks them from reaching the earth. UVA and UVB rays are present all year and are hazardous whether they are direct or reflected.

    When the sun's ultraviolet radiation reaches the surface of the skin, the skin reacts by producing melanin -- otherwise known as a tan -- to protect itself. UVA rays are milder than UVB rays, but because their wavelengths are longer, they penetrate deeper through the skin's layers. UVA rays contribute to wrinkling the skin, as well as to the development of skin cancer.

    UVA rays  are used in tanning booths. UVA rays in tanning booths not only inflict damage similar to sunlight, they are also more intense in a tanning booth than the equivalent time spent in natural sunlight.
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    A , Cardiology (Cardiovascular Disease), answered
    With any unprotected sun exposure your skin absorbs harmful ultraviolet (UV) radiation. If your skin is sunburned it will undergo a process to repair injured skin cells. With frequent exposure to the sun your skin will turn darker and start to thicken. Sun exposure also leads to wrinkles.

    The biggest concern, however, is that repeated exposure to UV rays increases the risk of skin cancer. That includes basal cell carcinoma, squamous cell carcinoma, and melanoma, the deadliest type of skin cancer.
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    The sun’s ultraviolet (UV) light generates an army of free radicals. It’s estimated that half of the sun’s skin damage is caused by them. Inflammation and UV assaults are like a one-two punch to your skin because its major components, fats, proteins, and Deoxyribonucleic Acid (DNA), are favorite free-radical targets. The end result is skin aging: Collagen breaks down, abnormal elastin increases, moisture is lost, wrinkles accumulate, and skin cancer may start brewing, too.

    From The Mind-Beauty Connection: 9 Days to Less Stress, Gorgeous Skin, and a Whole New You by Amy Wechsler.

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    A , Internal Medicine, answered

    So it’s probably time to retire the name “liver spots” since these marks have nothing to do with your liver. The brown-colored, flat patches are technically called lentigines. (Sounds like a lentil in jeans!) Lentigines are not freckles or moles, but they are benign (not cancerous), darkly pigmented patches that typically show up as you age. In fact, you may have heard the patches referred to as “age spots.” They can pop up almost anywhere on your body.

     

    The most common type, solar lentigines, are on your hands and face, and whatever skin has been exposed to lots of ultraviolet (UV) rays. The presence of solar lentigines means you probably spent too much time sunbathing (or tanning in a salon), or frolicking on the beach without sunscreen on. And that’s a major risk factor for melanoma, a deadly type of skin cancer. If you aren’t sure if your brown spots are harmless, have a dermatologist take a closer look.

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    An antioxidant pill called Heliocare contains a number of anti-oxidants and has been credited with helping to reduce or prevent the inflammation caused by sun exposure. It cannot however replace sun block. Heliocare costs about $50 for 60 pills.

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    A , Cardiology (Cardiovascular Disease), answered
    Too much exposure to sunshine contributes to premature skin aging by damaging the skin with ultraviolet radiation, known as UV rays.  This can lead to early development of wrinkles, sagging, and brown “age spots.”  Watch the animation to learn more about protecting your skin from the sun.
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    A , Dermatology, answered
    It's important to realize that chemical UVA blockers are not created equal. Though physical, mineral blockers literally shield skin from both short and long UVA wavelengths, most chemical alternatives aren't able to protect from the entire UVA spectrum. Most protect from the shortwave UVA range. Avobenzone (Parsol 1789) is the only chemical UVA block that prevents long-wave UVA rays from penetrating. But avobenzone is not photostable, so it requires a photostabilizer (such as the new Helioplex) to prevent it from degrading quickly (usually in less than two hours) in sunlight.
    The differences among all these polysyllabic active ingredients are confounding but important to comprehend. Some are more protective than others, some absorb only a certain length of UVA ray, and many chemical sunscreens absorb only UVB radiation.


    Simple Skin Beauty: Every Woman's Guide to a Lifetime of Healthy, Gorgeous Skin
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    Everyone is susceptible to the harmful effects of the sun's UV radiation, not just when lying by the pool or at the beach but during activities as mundane as driving a car. Skin cancer, from overexposure to the sun, is the most common malignancy in the United States, with more than one million new cases being diagnosed each year. Although curable when detected early, it can be fatal when allowed to progress -- particularly the most serious form of skin cancer, melanoma.
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    Sunshine serves a critical function in the body that sunscreen appears to inhibit -- producing vitamin D. The hormone is enormously important. It strengthens bones and the immune system and reduces the risk of breast, colon, kidney and ovarian cancers, and perhaps other disorders.
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    A , Dermatology, answered
    They could possibly prove harmful because their tiny size may be able to penetrate into the dermis through hair follicles and then into the bloodstream. The good news is that zinc oxide and titanium dioxide used to look like white diaper cream on your skin, and now they've become nearly transparent thanks to this micronization. A lot of mineral makeup and powder sunscreen formulations utilize nanoparticles of titanium dioxide and zinc oxide too. But now this active ingredient, or drug, is not only blocking ultraviolet light by sitting on top of the skin, it's being delivered through the pores into the body. Most sunblocks use nanoparticles (although products don't have to disclose that information on the label). A measurement of a nanometer is one billionth of a meter - approximately one ten-thousandth the diameter of a strand of human hair.
    The concern is that these ingredients, if they are absorbed, could then create free radicals that damage DNA. In fairness, the lab studies involving nano-size titanium dioxide didn't concern sunscreens but were done using photoactive titanium dioxide (sun enhancers that break down chemical contamination). Sunscreen products use coated nanoparticles designed to deflect sunlight and are not made to generate free radicals. Most of the scientific studies done on nanoparticles over the past ten years have not detected penetration through human skin. Environmental groups such as Friends of the Earth complain that there have not been enough studies done and that products containing nanoparticles should be required to state that on the label. And that's a good point. The Environmental Working Group (EWG), a consumer advocacy organization, still recommends products with these physical blockers, whether they are nano-size or not. They argue that nanoparticles of titanium dioxide and zinc oxide are just as toxic as chemical sunscreens such as oxybenzone and octinoxate that the EWG claims can be absorbed into the skin and cause abnormal activity in the body.
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