Younger generations have grown up with the expectation that it’s important to protect their skin from sun damage. But for seniors, it can be hard to embrace the idea. However, as Todt Hill residents age, their skin becomes even more vulnerable to UV damage. Following some basic tips for UV protection can help them keep their skin healthy.
Many seniors grew up in an era when a tan was considered healthy. Of course, now we know that UV exposure is the number one cause of skin cancer. People used to believe that the majority of the sun damage we accumulate happens when we are young. But according to the Skin Cancer Foundation, most of that UV damage actually happens after age 40. In fact, it’s the sun’s effect on the skin later in life that is most likely to lead to skin cancer.
There are excellent reasons for seniors to protect themselves from the sun, and it doesn’t have to be difficult. Here are the facts about why it’s so important, and some practical tips to protect your skin at any age.
The Dangers of Ignoring UV Protection for Seniors
UV damage doesn’t have an age limit, but it does accelerate over time. Instead of UV protection becoming less important with age, it becomes even more vital as the years go by. Here are some of the main reasons that’s true.
1. Early UV damage sets the stage.
People may assume that they’ve gone without sunscreen their whole lives and never had a problem, so why should they worry now? However, all that early damage causes subtle changes in the skin’s DNA. It’s impossible to know when that damage will become enough to cause skin cancer, but seniors are closer to that tipping point than younger people.
2. The skin becomes more vulnerable with age.
As people get older, their skin becomes thinner, which makes it possible for UV rays to penetrate deeper. This means the same sun exposure can cause more damage than it used to.
On top of that, the immune system gets weaker with age, making it harder for the body to repair the skin. This means new DNA damage is more likely, and previous damage can more easily progress to cancer.
3. Seniors are at greater risk.
Because of these and other factors, the older someone is, the more likely they are to get skin cancer. Over half of all deaths related to skin cancer occur in people who are over 65 years old. Despite this, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reports that only about 15 percent of older adults regularly take steps to toward UV protection.
But even though the risk is greater for seniors, they aren’t helpless against UV damage. Protecting them from the sun is the most important thing you can do to keep them safe.
How To Protect Seniors From UV Exposure
With some basic sun protection measures, you can significantly reduce dangerous UV radiation. This doesn’t have to be a complicated process; just remember these tips.
1. Stay inside when the sun is high.
The amount of UV rays you’re exposed to varies by the time of day. Try to stay indoors between the hours of 10:00 AM and 4:00 PM, when the sun’s rays are strongest.
2. Seek shade.
When you spend time outside, do your best to stay in the shade. You can also block the rays with sun-protective clothing. Look for tightly woven fabric, and wear a long-sleeved shirt and pants. Many companies make comfortable, breathable clothes that also keep out the sun. A wide-brimmed hat and sunglasses that block UV rays are a great addition to your sun-safe outfit.
3. Use good sunscreen.
Look for a broad-spectrum sunscreen that has an SPF of at least 15 (30 is even better). It’s a good idea to wear sunscreen every day, even if you aren’t planning to go outside. When you are outdoors, reapply your sunscreen often, especially if you’re swimming or getting sweaty. New formulations are comfortable and easy to apply, so try a few varieties to find the one that works for you.
David York Agency Home Healthcare Helps Seniors in Todt Hill
At David York Agency, we understand the many challenges and risks faced by the aging and elderly and are dedicated to providing care to support them through all of those ups and downs. At David York Home Healthcare Agency, extraordinary service is what sets us apart from other companies in Todt Hill that provide in-home healthcare services.
DYA provides direction as to how to manage the total care of your senior loved one. Whatever your care needs, we are there for you, always striving to exceed your expectations. For more information about David York Agency’s qualified, compassionate caregivers, contact us at (718) 376-7755. A free phone consultation can help you determine what services would meet your needs. We aim to provide you and your loved one with the assistance they need. If you’d like to hear more from us, please like us on Facebook or follow us on Twitter or LinkedIn.