July is Ultraviolet Safety Month. As the warm weather beckons us to enjoy time outdoors with family and friends, recognize the impact that UV radiation has on our lives and be cognizant of how to protect
our skin and eyes.
Ultraviolet or UV radiation is a type of electromagnetic radiation that is emitted by the sun, as well as items like tanning beds and welding torches. UV rays possess more energy than visible light but less than x-rays, falling on the spectrum of high-frequency to low-frequency radiation waves.
There are three primary types of UV radiation:
UVA rays have the longest wavelength on the UV radiation spectrum, and contain the least amount of energy of the three. UVA rays cause damage to the skin by causing skin cells to age and damaging the cells’ DNA indirectly. They are associated with wrinkles and other long term skin damage and may play a
part in certain skin cancers.
UVB rays have a shorter wavelength than UVA rays, and contain a bit more energy. UVB rays have the power to directly damage the DNA in skin cells. Even though a portion of these rays are absorbed by the ozone layer, UVB rays are the cause of sunburns and are believed to be the reason for most skin cancers.
UVC rays have the shortlist wavelength and contain the highest levels of harmful energy. Since they react with the ozone high up in the atmosphere, with few reaching the ground, they normally do not play a part in skin cancer. UVC rays are also found in things made by man like mercury lamps and UV
sanitizing bulbs used to kill germs and bacteria.
When are UV rays strongest on the ground? Here are some factors to keep in mind when spending time outdoors:
*Cloud coverage: clouds can impact the rays, but they certainly don’t prevent them from getting through. Stay protected even on cloudy days.
*Altitude: UV rays are much stronger at higher elevations than they are at sea level.
*Time of day: UV rays are strongest between the hours of 10 am and 4 pm.
*Season: UV rays are stronger during the spring and summer.
*Air contents: it is possible for the upper atmosphere ozone to filter out some UV radiation.
*Surface reflection: UV rays are able to bounce off many surfaces like sand, water, snow, pavement and grass, leading to an increase in exposure.
Both squamous cell and basal cell cancers tend to occur on parts of the body exposed to sunlight. The more serious but less common form of skin cancer, melanoma, is also linked to sun exposure. UV rays can cause skin issues including leathery skin, liver spots, wrinkles and actinic keratosis. UV ray exposure can also weaken the immune system. Additionally, UV rays are responsible for a number of eye issues. The cornea can burn or become inflamed by UV rays. The formation of cataracts, which can impair vision, has also been linked to exposure to UV rays.
To protect yourself from the sun’s rays, limit your exposure by wearing protective clothing and a floppy hat, always use a broad spectrum sunscreen, seek shade, and wear sunglasses to protect your eyes and the delicate surrounding skin. Select sunglasses that have 100 percent UV protection and never look directly at the sun.
Cover Recover from Dp Dermaceuticals should be part your daily skincare routine. A healing cream as well as a full spectrum sunscreen with an SPF 30, it protects the skin from UV rays, harmful bacteria and other environmental factors. An ideal product for all skin types!