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Can I get sunburned on a cloudy day?

Dr. Mehmet Oz, MD
Cardiology (Cardiovascular Disease)

Absolutely. You can get burned on a cloudy day or even if you're in a snowy environment. The sun's rays can also reflect off of water, cement and other surfaces.

 

Agueda Hernandez, MD
Family Medicine
Yes. The sun's UVA rays are so strong they can penetrate some clothing and even glass. Clouds are no deterrent. The Skin Cancer Foundation says that up to 80 percent of the sun's UV rays can pass through clouds. Many people get serious sunburns on overcast days because they think they don't need sun protection.
Cloudy days can be deceptive because they block much of the heat of thermal radiation, which people usually associate with high UV levels. So they don't necessary feel a sunburn. Those who take ski vacations during winter months beware – snow can reflect up to 80 percent of UV rays, increasing exposure.  

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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.