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Myth or Truth: Can you sunbathe all day long if you are wearing sunscreen?

Myth or Truth: Can you sunbathe all day long if you are wearing sunscreen?

Item mandatory in both summer and winter, the sunscreen avoids problems such as burns, skin cancer and premature aging, but is the product sufficient for a full day of sun exposure?

According to dermatologists, only the protector solar is not enough: the photoprotection should be a set of measures to protect from the sun. These measures include sunscreen, but there are also other forms that should be associated, such as wearing hats, sunglasses and sunscreen, for example.

"Woman sunbathing on her face in the pool - Photo : "The sun emits various types of radiation, waves of varying lengths, each of these wavelengths will determine the consequences of this radiation for humans," explains Analexia Florentino, dermatologist at the Mais Excellence Medical clinic.

"Thus, it is imperative that, in addition to generously applying a sunscreen, we should always be in the shade and with broad-brimmed hats and thick fabrics, preferably dark, even in the less intense sunshine hours."

Another tip of the doctor is to keep clothes always dry when exposed to the sun. "Wet fabric protects less than dry, but there are brands of hats and lightweight fabrics with more tightly woven fabrics that allow for reasonable protection even when wet."


The protector Solar should be applied 30 minutes before exposure and reapplied every two to three hours, or after periods of immersion in water.

The amount should be generous. Understand the recommendation of the Brazilian Society of Dermatology (SBD) about how much sunscreen should be used on each part of the body:

Face, head and neck: 1 teaspoon (to be divided between the three parts)

  • Arm and right forearm: 1 teaspoon
  • Left arm and forearm: 1 teaspoon
  • Torso (front and back): 2 teaspoons (1 forwards and 1 for back)
  • Thigh and right leg: 2 teaspoons (1 for the front and 1 for the back)
  • Left thigh and leg: 2 teaspoons (1 for the front and 1 for the back) .
  • In addition, it should be remembered that the protector must be used both on sunny days and in cloudy periods.

The Sun Protection Factor (SPF) is also an important choice for efficient photoprotection.

"Your method is based on the determination of Minimum Erythematosus Dose (DEM), defined as the least amount of energy needed to trigger erythema (redness) in areas of skin protected and unprotected by the product under study, "explains Florentino.

This means that the time it takes for the skin to exhibit redness is used as the basis for choosing FPS. "Thus, if a given protector has the value of SPF 30, it means, in practice, that 30 times more sun exposure is necessary to produce erythema, compared to the situation in which this user would not be wearing that protector," adds the specialist

The Brazilian Society of Dermatology indicates the minimum SPF of 30, but the dermatologist should be consulted to determine this number for each patient.

Difference between UVA and UVB

The protection of filters and sun blockers incidence of ultraviolet rays A and B, and the difference between them is in the effects that each causes on the skin.

"UVA radiation has constant intensity throughout the year reaching the skin in much the same way during winter or summer It penetrates deep into the skin, being the main responsible for photoaging and also provides skin with the appearance of cancer, "explains Daniel Dziabas, a full member of the Brazilian Society of De rmatology.

"UVB radiation has an increased incidence during the summer, especially in the hours between 10am and 4pm, when light intensity reaches its maximum, UVB rays penetrate superficially and cause sunburn.It is mainly responsible for cellular changes that predispose


Even with the association of photoprotection measures, prolonged exposure to the sun has contraindications and may harm the health of the skin. Tanning is one of the consequences of staying too long in the sun. Despite leaving the look with the summer face that many adore, it is nothing more than a reaction of the body to the radiation, which, to protect itself, increases the production of melanin and gives the tone darker. the exposure passes from the point of tanning, can result in dilation of blood vessels and occurrence of burns. "In general, sunburn starts with a redness, which then progresses to varying degrees of pain. Superficial lesions can be treated with creams and lotions, and hot baths are advised against the affected areas, as well as the use of soaps "If the condition develops for the appearance of blisters, vesicles (which are minor blisters) and intense pain, the same prior care is recommended and should avoid manipulation of the site," says Florentino. In these cases, it is advisable to seek medical help to avoid the appearance of infections or sequelae such as blemishes and scars.

In addition to blemishes and skin diseases, "exposure to UV radiation also leads to the collapse of collagen and elastin production, accelerating the process of wrinkling and fine lines, "adds the doctor.

" The person who is exposed without ideal protection may still have precancerous lesions and skin cancer, "adds Dziabas.

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