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After Hours
Is it just us, or is this the hottest summer we've had in a while? With the temperatures soaring, heading to the nearest body of water sounds like the perfect place to cool off. That's why it's the perfect time to refresh your memory about caring for your skin in the harsh summer sun. Read on to find out how to stay healthy, and cool, this summer!
The Top Three Sun Safety Mistakes (and How to Avoid Them!)
We all know that the sun damages skin. Women, especially, are aware of how sun damage can affect skin cosmetically - causing wrinkles and discolorations. But the sun also can be responsible for dangerous skin cancers, like melanoma. Below, check out the top three sun safety mistakes we make, and how to prevent them:
Sun Safety Mistake #1: Choosing a Sunscreen
You're standing in the sunscreen aisle at the drug store staring at more than 30 versions of sunscreen. Before you give up and just choose the one that smells the best, remember some key facts about "sun protection factor" (SPF).
First, select an SPF of at least 15, higher if you are more prone to sunburn. Next, check the bottle to see if it offers "broad-spectrum protection."
"Broad-spectrum sunscreens contain ingredients that block both UVA and UVB rays," says Dr. Marcela Young, Marcela Young, M.D. Internal Medicine. "That's important because while UVB rays cause sunburn, UVA rays can penetrate deeper into the skin and cause more damage to cells." Products that contain titanium dioxide, zinc oxide, or Parsol 1789 (avobenzone) are the best for UVA protection.
Sun Safety Mistake #2: Faulty Application
Many people apply sunscreen once they get to the pool, beach or lake. But according to Dr. Young, it can take up to 20 minutes for the ingredients in sunscreen to fully bind to the skin and begin working. By then, you could be on your way to a burn. In addition, when you apply sunscreen at your destination, you're more likely to miss a spot - especially the small areas around the edges of your bathing suit.
"Apply your sunscreen before you leave the house so that you are more likely to cover all of your skin, and the sunscreen has a chance to be absorbed by the skin," says Dr. Young.
Sun Safety Mistake #3: Using Too Little
If you don't put on a thick enough layer of sunscreen, that SPF 30 could really function more as an SPF 15. "A good rule of thumb is to apply about an ounce of sunscreen at every application, and reapply every two hours," says Dr. Young. "Reapplication of sunscreen is just as important as putting it on the first time, so reapply the same amount every two hours, and after swimming, toweling off, or sweating"
So if you're spending an entire 8-hour day in the sun, one person would use nearly half of an 8 oz. bottle of sunscreen.
One final thought on sun safety: keep in mind that we get sun all the time - not just when we're at the beach. Even on cloudy days, just walking to the mailbox or doing yard work without sunscreen can cause damage. It's a good idea to get into the routine of wearing sunscreen every day to protect your skin.
 Marcela Young, MD
Dr. Marcela Young is an Internal Medicine physician with Marcela Young, M.D. Internal Medicine in Greenville.
Learn more about Dr. Young.
St. Francis Bone Marrow Transplant Unit to Expand

Through a successful campaign that has raised more than $1 million from community and employee gifts, St. Francis' Bone Marrow Transplant Unit is poised to undergo an expansion that will more than double its capacity.

"We are so fortunate to be in a community that has a deep appreciation for the healing mission of St. Francis," says Mark Nantz, CEO, Bon Secours St. Francis Health System. "These generous gifts make it possible for patients in this region who are candidates for the comprehensive and life-saving treatments provided by this unit to access the level of care they so desperately need and remain close to home and their families."
The St. Francis Bone Marrow Transplant Unit is the first and only one of its kind in the region. It is only one of two dedicated, inpatient transplant units within South Carolina and serves patients from a regional, multi-state base.

The Vive! newsletter was created for women to offer education and lifestyle tips for betterknowledge and care for your health. Find more information online, and tell a friend!

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