Sunburn in the winter?

It is very possible to get burned in the winter; especially if you are outside for extended periods of time. This can happen working on the lawn, fishing or even skiing. Colorado and New Mexico are favorite winter destinations for Texans, but remember that UV radiation exposure is greater at higher altitudes. If you are out on the slopes, any water surface reflects the sun’s rays and can double the UV radiation dose. Even though much of your skin is covered by gear on the slopes, you always need to protect your exposed skin. Use a water-resistant, broad-spectrum sunscreen, wear a hat, and don’t forget eye protection. Many cases of skin cancer are found on the head, neck and ears; areas that can be exposed to UV rays while on the mountain.

Don’t let the clouds fool you because 80 percent of the sun’s rays penetrate the clouds! Winter is not over yet, and the temperature can trick you! As we mentioned, use a broad spectrum sunblock with UVA and UVB protection. Stabilized avobenzone or helioplpex, mexoryl, and zinc oxide are the best protectants. Look for these ingredients. If you are wearing makeup, a mineral makeup with zinc oxides offers an additional layer of protection. Reapply every two hours if skiing or fishing outdoors for long periods of time. Lastly, don’t forget a hat and try to go out before 10am or after 4pm. Have fun, just don’t forget to keep yourself safe from the sun; even in winter!

About Christine Brown, M.D.

Dr. Christine Brown operates a leading dermatology practice in Dallas, Texas. She understands the importance of good skin care and is committed to providing you with high-quality care in a pleasant and professional atmosphere. Services include clinical and cosmetic dermatology.
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