Citizens Memorial Hospital | Vitality | Summer 2023 7 Spending time outdoors is great for your physical and mental health. But too much sun exposure can result in sunburn, skin damage and cancer. The sun produces damaging ultraviolet (UV) rays all year round. Even on cloudy days, up to 80% of the sun’s UV rays can reach your skin. Sunscreen is a necessary safeguard. “There may be lower UV radiation levels from the sun during fall or winter, but you still develop sun damage,” says Murphy R. Mastin, M.D., a board certified dermatologist with the CMH Dermatology Clinic. “For your skin, 80% of aging is sun-related damage, and we’re seeing higher levels of that at earlier ages.” CHOOSING SUNSCREEN The best sunscreen to choose is the one you will use. Look for these specific components on the label: Broad-spectrum coverage. This SKIN CARE Protect your skin from the sun protects from UVA and UVB rays. UVA rays (aging rays) can cause wrinkles and age spots, and UVB rays (burning rays) can cause sunburn. Sun protection factor (SPF). If you are indoors most of the day, using an SPF of at least 15 is sufficient. If you spend much time outdoors, aim for an SPF of 30 or higher. Water-resistant. “Water-resistant” is considered effective for up to 40 minutes in water. “Very waterresistant” is generally effective for up to 80 minutes. You must reapply after getting out of the water or sweating. CMH Dermatology Clinic offers dermatologist-approved mineral-based sunscreens in the MD Ultra skin care product line. See related story below. MORE SUN SAFETY TIPS Although sunscreen is a must-have, you can also take other steps to avoid the sun and protect your skin: Seek shade when outside. UV rays from the sun are the strongest between 10 a.m. and 2 p.m. Wear sun-protective clothing. For example: » Tightly woven fabrics. » Pants. » A lightweight, long-sleeved shirt. » Dark or bright colors. » Sunglasses with UV protection. » A wide-brimmed hat without holes. Avoid tanning beds. Instead of tanning beds, consider self-tanning products; however, you still need to take proper precautions and use sunscreen. Inspect your skin regularly. Take note of anything new that appears or any changes, itching or bleeding. Sources: American Academy of Dermatology; National Center for Environmental Health; Skin Cancer Foundation Medical-grade sunscreen options CMH Dermatology Clinic offers two dermatologist-approved sunscreen options in its MD Ultra skin care product line. Purely Physical SPF 47 This rich, waterresistant sunscreen is formulated with chemical-free actives and provides UVA and UVB protection for all skin types. Sheer Defense Tinted SPF 46 An antioxidant-rich, lightweight and oil-free SPF 45 sunscreen is universally tinted and provides broad-spectrum coverage from UVA, UVB and infrared radiation. FIND OUT IF IT’S RIGHT FOR YOU. Learn more at or by calling the clinic at 417-328-4500. HAVE QUESTIONS ABOUT YOUR SKIN? Call the CMH Dermatology Clinic at 417-328-4500 or visit to find a primary care provider. LEARN MORE ABOUT SUN PROTECTION in a video with Dr. Mastin at