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Sun Exposure

Also called: Sunburn

Summary

Ultraviolet (UV) rays are an invisible form of radiation. They can pass through your skin and damage your skin cells. Sunburns are a sign of skin damage. Suntans aren't healthy, either. They appear after the sun's rays have already killed some cells and damaged others. UV rays can cause skin damage during any season or at any temperature. They can also cause eye problems, wrinkles, skin spots, and skin cancer.

To protect yourself

  • Stay out of the sun when it is strongest (between 10 a.m. and 2 p.m.)
  • Use sunscreen with an SPF of 15 or higher
  • Wear protective clothing
  • Wear wraparound sunglasses that provide 100 percent UV ray protection
  • Avoid sunlamps and tanning beds

Check your skin regularly for changes in the size, shape, color, or feel of birthmarks, moles, and spots. Such changes are a sign of skin cancer.

Food and Drug Administration

Start Here

  • (Environmental Protection Agency) Also in
  • From the National Institutes of Health (National Institutes of Health) Also in
  • (Logical Images)

Prevention and Risk Factors

  • (American Academy of Dermatology)
  • (Environmental Protection Agency) - PDF Also in
  • (National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health) - PDF Also in
  • (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention) Also in

Treatments and Therapies

  • (American Academy of Dermatology)
  • (Mayo Foundation for Medical Education and Research)

Related Issues

  • (Logical Images)
  • (Logical Images)
  • (Mayo Foundation for Medical Education and Research)
  • (Logical Images)
  • (Skin Cancer Foundation)
  • (Logical Images)
  • (Logical Images)
  • (American Academy of Dermatology)
  • From the National Institutes of Health (National Institutes of Health, Office of Dietary Supplements) Also in

Specifics

  • (Mayo Foundation for Medical Education and Research)
  • (American Academy of Ophthalmology) Also in

Genetics

  • From the National Institutes of Health (National Library of Medicine)

Images

  • (Logical Images)
  • (American Academy of Dermatology)

Health Check Tools

  • (American Academy of Dermatology)

Videos and Tutorials

Statistics and Research

  • (American Academy of Dermatology)

Clinical Trials

  • From the National Institutes of Health (National Institutes of Health)
  • From the National Institutes of Health (National Institutes of Health)
  • From the National Institutes of Health (National Institutes of Health)

Journal Articles References and abstracts from MEDLINE/PubMed (National Library of Medicine)

Find an Expert

  • Also in
  • Also in

Children

  • (American Academy of Family Physicians) Also in
  • (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention) Also in
  • (Food and Drug Administration) Also in
  • (American Academy of Pediatrics) Also in
  • (American Academy of Dermatology)

Teenagers

  • (Department of Health and Human Services, Office on Women's Health)

Seniors

  • From the National Institutes of Health (National Institute on Aging) - PDF

Patient Handouts

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