Health Watch — Going Outdoors: Sun Exposure

Health Watch is a Public Service of the Office of News and Publications  and is intended to provide general information only and should not replace the advice of a medical professional. You should contact your physician if you have questions about any of these topics.

This week on Health Watch, we’re talking about going outdoors to enjoy the warm spring weather. Before you go out, take a moment to protect your skin.

Dr. Erin Welch, a dermatologist at UT Southwestern Medical Center, says sun exposure can lead to wrinkles or even skin cancer. But you shouldn’t limit your sunscreen use to outdoor activities such as hiking and sunbathing. Most of your sun exposure is incidental, coming as you go about your daily activities. That’s why you should wear sunscreen every day. Make a habit of putting on a sunscreen with an SPF of at least 30 whenever you’ll be in the sun for longer than 15 minutes. Apply it half an hour before going out, and reapply if you’ve been swimming or sweating. You should also use a lip balm with an SPF of 15 to protect your lips from sun damage.

Visit to learn more about UT Southwestern’s clinical services in dermatology.  


May 2008

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