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As a young man, do I need to worry about applying sunscreen?

Susan Evans
Dermatology
A concern for the gentlemen is the use of sunscreen. When you're in your 20s and 30s, you are usually very active, participating in a number of outdoor activities. Most men in this age group pay little attention to the need for sunscreen. Men, don't ignore this. UVA and UVB rays are dangerous. It doesn't matter if you're young – you’ll pay the price – some of you sooner than later. As you age, you'll find that even your hair is thinning and your scalp is exposed to those damaging rays of the sun. Wear a hat! More men than women are seen for precancerous conditions of the scalp for this reason. Taking a few minor steps can prevent major skin concerns in your future.
Dr. Mehmet Oz, MD
Cardiology (Cardiovascular Disease)
No matter what your age or gender, always apply a broad-spectrum sunscreen with a sun protection factor (SPF) of 30 or higher before spending time outdoors to help protect yourself from sunburn, premature skin aging later in life, and skin cancer. In the US, one person dies from melanoma, the deadliest form of skin cancer, almost every hour.

Along with slathering sunscreen on your skin before going outdoors, it's important to cover up. Wear  a wide-brimmed hat, long sleeves, and long pants, especially if you'll be out during the peak sun hours of  10 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Sunscreen application is important any day you'll be outside. Men and women should use sunscreen to help reduce the numbers of skin cancers that you might develop later in life. Most skin cancers develop 4 or more decades after the injury, but the additional function of sunscreen, for which it is important for you to use it even if you're 60+, is that it helps prevent the sunshine's damage to the skin's immune cells that help reverse the DNA damage of the sun from years ago. Therefore, the use of sunscreen today can lessen skin cancer that has been trying to form since youth.

Furthermore, the number one cause of the facial aged appearance is not age, but prior sun exposure. Consistent use of sunscreen can minimize future wrinkle formation.

Please remember to take Vitamin D3 by mouth as your skin won't be able to make it any longer once the sun's rays are blocked.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.