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Skin Safety: 5 sunburns before 20 years old increases skin cancer potential 80%

Published: Jul. 7, 2020 at 4:05 PM EDT
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LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WAVE) - We could all use a little extra Vitamin D after being cooped up inside the last few months.

Before heading outside, remember sunscreen. It’s easy to forget, and sometimes overlooked, but it can save your life.

Your chance of getting skin cancer jumps by a whopping 80 percent if you get a sunburn five times before you turn 20.

With so many different brands on the market, dermatologists encourage everyone to wear sunscreen with a broad spectrum that blocks out both UVA and UVB sun rays.

UVA ages your skin prematurely, while UVB is what gives you a sunburn.

One of the biggest myths when it comes to sunscreen is the higher the SPF, the better; that’s not true.

The Skin Cancer Foundation recommends using SPF 30, with broad-spectrum protection. The number 30 means it will take you 30 times longer to burn, compared to if you weren’t wearing any sunscreen.

Sunscreen should be reapplied every two hours, even if it’s water-resistant.

Experts advise parents to use half a teaspoon of sunscreen on their child’s face, and one ounce on their body.

Experts also recommend that consumers rub in spray-on sunscreen, otherwise it’s hard to know how much is really being used.

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