A recent survey published by JAMA Dermatology states that out of 156 U.S. dermatologists, 99 percent of them agree that their patients don’t apply enough sunscreen.
Some other interesting findings include that 100 percent of them agreed that sunscreen reduces premature aging of the skin; 97 percent agreed that it also lowers the risk of cancer; and 96 percent consider sunscreens approved by the FDA that are currently available in the U.S. to be safe.
Why do people seem to have such a hard time following the old adage of wearing sunscreen every day?
According to New York City dermatologist and psychiatrist Amy Wechsler, MD, our love for spending time in the sun may be embedded deeper in our selves than we know.
“Many of us connect that warm feeling from the sun with being a kid,” she says. “It harks back to a time of freedom—swimming and playing outside, feeling carefree and without responsibilities,” said Dr. Wechsler.
Aside from the anti-aging benefit, the Skin Cancer Foundation stresses that wearing sunscreen is essential to skin cancer prevention.
About 90 percent of non-melanoma skin cancers and about 86 percent of melanomas are associated with exposure to UV radiation from the sun. Learn how to protect yourself to stay safe.
Santa Monica, CA, dermatologist Ava Shamban, MD, agrees that people simply aren’t wearing enough sunscreen and offers some tips.
“Be sure that every inch of exposed skin is covered with a thick layer of sunscreen. This includes ears, back of the neck, chest, and the back of your hands,” said Dr. Shamban.
“Adequate coverage is approximately one shot glass of sunscreen per limb, half a shot glass for the face, and one shot glass for the neck and chest.”