4 MUST KNOW Safety Tips for Choosing and Applying Your Child’s Sunscreen

Sunscreen is a MUST for our kids! And, although most of us use it on them routinely, is the type that we are using really safe for kids? I recently had to make a sunscreen switch for my own daughter after reviewing the American Academy of Pediatrics and the FDA’s updated guidelines and recommendations. Since I was in the dark on this topic, I thought I would share 4 important points that every mom should know.

1. Ditch the Oxybenzone

When a friend asked me my opinion about oxybenzone in children’s sunscreen, I gave her a blank stare. I hadn’t really heard all that much about it, and I assumed that the concerns were simply social media hype. Trying not to be too skeptical, I told her that I would look into it. To my surprise, there does seem to be some legitimate concern regarding oxybenzone, although some organizations such as the American Academy of Dermatology do still think that it is safe to use in children. (The CDC and the Environmental Working Group). This product which is found in many infant and children sunscreens can act like a hormone, potentially influencing our developing children’s endocrine systems. Although long-term studies have not yet been done to determine the extent of the harm, the American Academy of Pediatrics is recommending that parents avoid this ingredient when purchasing sunscreen. In a society where precocious puberty (puberty at a young age) is becoming a more common issue, I decided it was probably a good idea to not take a chance. I’ve opted for a oxybenzone free sunscreen. On a side note, if you are going to be out in the sun and your only option for sunscreen contains oxybenzone, go ahead and use it. Infrequent use is probably not going to have an effect on your child’s hormone levels, but we do know that sunburns in childhood definitely predispose them to skin cancer later in life.

2.  Aerosolized Children’s Sunscreen May be a “No, No”

Many of the large sunscreen companies have made our lives as moms much easier! They have created an aerosolized sunscreen revolution. It’s fast, it’s much less messy, and it goes on more easily. Bad news is…we aren’t exactly sure what it might be doing in our children’s lungs. The whole point of an aerosolized sunscreen is that it sprays through the air onto the skin. Our children are inevitably breathing in some of this spray. Because the aerosolized sunscreens contain nano particles (incredibly tiny particles), when breathed in they are able to travel much further into the lungs. There is concern in the medical community that these nano particles might cause local irritation in the lung tissue or result in increased absorption with unknown longterm effects. If you have to use an aerosolized spray, first spray it onto your hand (away from your child) and then apply it to your child’s skin directly.Hand heart

3. Broad Coverage Update

The FDA has changed its regulations on how companies are allowed to promote their sunscreens. They can only advertise “Broad Coverage” if they provide both UVA (ultraviolet ray A) and UVB (ultraviolet ray B) protection. You want to make sure that you are choosing a sunscreen that has both of these. This is the only way to prevent not only sunburns, but also longterm risk for skin cancers. In addition to broad coverage, make sure that you look for an SPF of at least 15 to 30 (50 would be great if you have the option). Anything higher than 50 doesn’t really have any additional protection as far as we can tell. So, if it says SPF 70 but no broad coverage, don’t buy it!

4. Put it on Before You Hit the Beach and then Keep Reapplying!!

Sunscreen needs a little time (15-30 minutes) to absorb in order to be effective. Don’t wait until you are already in the sun to put it on your kids. Apply it before you leave the house so that they will be protected from the harmful UV rays the entire time they are in the sun. Remember to keep reapplying it as well. Once and done is not going to work. Most sunscreens need to be Little girl with bottle of sun cream sitting at tropical beachreapplied after two hours. However, if your child is swimming or sweating, you should reapply it sooner.

Check out the AAP Sun Safety Guideline Information Sheet for Parents for more information on sun protection. Remember…protecting your child’s skin from burns today will protect him/her from skin cancer later in life. It really is that important!

From,

mimmd_master-logo_300px

 

 

 

How to make sure that your child’s sunscreen is helping and not hurting!

Sunscreen is a MUST for our kids! And, although most of us use it on them routinely, is the type that we are using really safe for kids? I recently had to make a sunscreen switch for my own daughter after reviewing the American Academy of Pediatrics and the FDA’s updated guidelines and recommendations. Since I was in the dark on this topic, I thought I would share 4 important points that every mom should know.

1. Ditch the Oxybenzone

When a friend asked me my opinion about oxybenzone in children’s sunscreen, I gave her a blank stare. I hadn’t really heard all that much about it, and I assumed that the concerns were simply social media hype. Trying not to be too skeptical, I told her that I would look into it. To my surprise, there does seem to be some legitimate concern regarding oxybenzone, although some organizations such as the American Academy of Dermatology do still think that it is safe to use in children. (The CDC and the Environmental Working Group). This product which is found in many infant and children sunscreens can act like a hormone, potentially influencing our developing children’s endocrine systems. Although long-term studies have not yet been done to determine the extent of the harm, the American Academy of Pediatrics is recommending that parents avoid this ingredient when purchasing sunscreen. In a society where precocious puberty (puberty at a young age) is becoming a more common issue, I decided it was probably a good idea to not take a chance. I’ve opted for a oxybenzone free sunscreen. On a side note, if you are going to be out in the sun and your only option for sunscreen contains oxybenzone, go ahead and use it. Infrequent use is probably not going to have an effect on your child’s hormone levels, but we do know that sunburns in childhood definitely predispose them to skin cancer later in life.

2.  Aerosolized Children’s Sunscreen May be a “No, No”

Many of the large sunscreen companies have made our lives as moms much easier! They have created an aerosolized sunscreen revolution. It’s fast, it’s much less messy, and it goes on more easily. Bad news is…we aren’t exactly sure what it might be doing in our children’s lungs. The whole point of an aerosolized sunscreen is that it sprays through the air onto the skin. Our children are inevitably breathing in some of this spray. Because the aerosolized sunscreens contain nano particles (incredibly tiny particles), when breathed in they are able to travel much further into the lungs. There is concern in the medical community that these nano particles might cause local irritation in the lung tissue or result in increased absorption with unknown longterm effects. If you have to use an aerosolized spray, first spray it onto your hand (away from your child) and then apply it to your child’s skin directly.Hand heart

3. Broad Coverage Update

The FDA has changed its regulations on how companies are allowed to promote their sunscreens. They can only advertise “Broad Coverage” if they provide both UVA (ultraviolet ray A) and UVB (ultraviolet ray B) protection. You want to make sure that you are choosing a sunscreen that has both of these. This is the only way to prevent not only sunburns, but also longterm risk for skin cancers. In addition to broad coverage, make sure that you look for an SPF of at least 15 to 30 (50 would be great if you have the option). Anything higher than 50 doesn’t really have any additional protection as far as we can tell. So, if it says SPF 70 but no broad coverage, don’t buy it!

4. Put it on Before You Hit the Beach and then Keep Reapplying!!

Sunscreen needs a little time (15-30 minutes) to absorb in order to be effective. Don’t wait until you are already in the sun to put it on your kids. Apply it before you leave the house so that they will be protected from the harmful UV rays the entire time they are in the sun. Remember to keep reapplying it as well. Once and done is not going to work. Most sunscreens need to be Little girl with bottle of sun cream sitting at tropical beachreapplied after two hours. However, if your child is swimming or sweating, you should reapply it sooner.

Check out the AAP Sun Safety Guideline Information Sheet for Parents for more information on sun protection. Remember…protecting your child’s skin from burns today will protect him/her from skin cancer later in life. It really is that important!

From,

mimmd_master-logo_300px

 

 

 

Stop Kissing the Sun: 4 Tips for Every Woman

Free Happy Woman Enjoying Nature. Beauty Girl Outdoor. Freedom cI didn’t listen to my mother. Well…I kind of, sort of listened. I had dabbed on a small amount of sunscreen 2 hours into my beach adventure. How hot could the sun be in April? I wanted to leave Florida with a beautiful bronze tan. Instead, I looked like a lobster. Not just any lobster, no, I looked like a boiled lobster. My skin was fire engine red, covered in blisters, and incredibly painful. I couldn’t shower. I couldn’t sleep. I couldn’t even wear a bra or t-shirt without feeling absolutely miserable. Instead of coming home with a tan, I came home to weeks of peeling, damaged skin…beautiful indeed.

What I hadn’t realized at the age of 14 was that severe burns like this could set me up for skin cancer later in life. Almost twenty years later, I still have to remind myself to lather on the sunscreen. I never forget to apply and reapply my daughter’s sunscreen, but in the back of my mind I am still longing for my own beautiful golden glow. Although I love the sun-kissed look, I’ve decided that my flirtation with UV rays needs to end. I need to stop kissing the sun…before it kisses me with skin cancer!

Ladder into skySkin cancer disfigures. It leaves scars, and it kills. I wish that I only knew this from reading text books, but within the past five years I have lost one of my role models to melanoma, and my own mother was diagnosed with a large squamous cell skin cancer on her face. These experiences have prompted me to ask myself, “Why do I work so hard to protect my daughter from the dangers of the sun, while leaving myself exposed to its harmful UV rays? Am I really that vain that I care more about my appearance than ensuring that I’m around to annoy my grandchildren with sun hats, gallons of sunscreen, and a tent sized umbrella for the beach? ” My conclusion…I need to lather up, suit up, shade up, and check up before it’s too late!

1. Lather up

Sunscreen is a must for all women! Putting it on is the first step, but reapplying it is just as important. Sunscreen only lasts for about 2 hours. If you are swimming, sweating, or wiping yourself off with a towel, you will need to put it on more frequently. Make sure that you choose a sunscreen with broad coverage (UVA and UVB protection). This will ensure that you are not only protecting against a sunburn but also against the rays that penetrate more deeply. Your SPF should be at least 15, but if 50 is available use it instead! Higher than 50 doesn’t offer any additional protection as far as we can tell. For day-to-day, when you aren’t in the sun much, make sure that you are still protecting your face. The easiest way to do this is by using a facial cream that contains SPF.

Mother And Daughter Under Beach Umbrella Putting On Sun Cream

2. Suit up

Wearing protective clothing is another way to limit your sun exposure. Many swimming suits and cover ups are made with UV protective fabric. Choosing one of these will help limit your exposure. If you aren’t planning on going for a swim and want to wear normal clothing, choose fabrics that offer more protection such as those made from tightly woven fabrics and darker colors. Another great option is to add sun protection to your clothes in the laundry. Companies like RIT now have laundry additives (such as Sun Guard) that add temporary UV protection to your clothes. Don’t forget a hat! Your head, face, and shoulders often get the most exposure. Wearing a broad rimmed hat (not just a baseball cap) can minimize this exposure the best. Finally, don’t forget to protect your eyes by wearing UV protective sunglasses!

3. Shade up

Look for shade! Use an umbrella at the beach and by the pool. Limit the amount of time that you spend in direct sunlight. You can still enjoy the beauty of a sunny day from underneath a canopy. Also, make sure to avoid being in direct sunlight during the most intense times of the day (between 10am  and 2pm). Even if it is a cloudy day UV rays are still beaming down! Make sure that you still seek shade and apply your sunscreen. If you are going to be on the beach, near the pool, or even playing in the snow make sure to take extra precautions. Sand, water, and snow all reflect light. This only increases the strength and damaging power of UV (ultraviolet) rays. Finally, don’t think that trading in the outdoors for a tanning booth is going to do you any favors. Shade yourself from all UV light…even the artificial kind.Beautiful Mother And Baby outdoors. Nature. Beauty Mum and her C

4. Check up

Look at your skin regularly, and for the hard to see parts, make sure that someone else is checking you out (a spouse, friend, or physician). If you notice that a mole has changed in size, shape, or color, get it checked out immediately! Using a mole map will make it easier to track changes in your skin. Make sure that you know the ABCDE’s of melanoma in order to be a good judge of what you are seeing. If you tend to have a lot of moles and sun spots, having a yearly skin check by your primary care physician or a dermatologist is a great idea.

Skin cancer can be prevented, and it can be effectively treated if caught early. These days if I get a sun kissed craving, I remind myself of the risks and reach for a bottle of bronzer instead. Who says a fake tan can’t be just as beautiful?

From The Mom in Me, MD

 

 

 

 

Children’s Sunscreen: 4 Things Every Mom Needs to Know!

Happy Family On The Beach. Mother And Baby DaughterSunscreen is a MUST for our kids! And, although most of us use it on them routinely, is the type that we are using really safe for kids? I recently had to make a sunscreen switch for Ayla after reviewing the American Academy of Pediatrics and the FDA’s updated guidelines and recommendations. Since I was in the dark on this topic, I thought I would share 4 important points that every mom should know.

1. Ditch the Oxybenzone

When a friend asked me my opinion about oxybenzone in children’s sunscreen, I gave her a blank stare. I hadn’t really heard all that much about it, and I assumed that the concerns were simply social media hype. Trying not to be too skeptical, I told her that I would look into it. To my surprise, there does seem to be some legitimate concern regarding oxybenzone, although some organizations such as the American Academy of Dermatology do still think that it is safe to use in children. (The CDC and the Environmental Working Group). This product which is found in many infant and children sunscreens can act like a hormone, potentially influencing our developing children’s endocrine systems. Although long-term studies have not yet been done to determine the extent of the harm, the American Academy of Pediatrics is recommending that parents avoid this ingredient when purchasing sunscreen. In a society where precocious puberty (puberty at a young age) is becoming a more common issue, I decided it was probably a good idea to not take a chance. I’ve opted for a oxybenzone free sunscreen. On a side note, if you are going to be out in the sun and your only option for sunscreen contains oxybenzone, go ahead and use it. Infrequent use is probably not going to have an effect on your child’s hormone levels, but we do know that sunburns in childhood definitely predispose them to skin cancer later in life.

2.  Aerosolized Children’s Sunscreen May be a “No, No”

Many of the large sunscreen companies have made our lives as moms much easier! They have created an aerosolized sunscreen revolution. It’s fast, it’s much less messy, and it goes on more easily. Bad news is…we aren’t exactly sure what it might be doing in our children’s lungs. The whole point of an aerosolized sunscreen is that it sprays through the air onto the skin. Our children are inevitably breathing in some of this spray. Because the aerosolized sunscreens contain nano particles (incredibly tiny particles), when breathed in they are able to travel much further into the lungs. There is concern in the medical community that these nano particles might cause local irritation in the lung tissue or result in increased absorption with unknown longterm effects. If you have to use an aerosolized spray, first spray it onto your hand (away from your child) and then apply it to your child’s skin directly.Hand heart

3. Broad Coverage Update

The FDA has changed its regulations on how companies are allowed to promote their sunscreens. They can only advertise “Broad Coverage” if they provide both UVA (ultraviolet ray A) and UVB (ultraviolet ray B) protection. You want to make sure that you are choosing a sunscreen that has both of these. This is the only way to prevent not only sunburns, but also longterm risk for skin cancers. In addition to broad coverage, make sure that you look for an SPF of at least 15 to 30 (50 would be great if you have the option). Anything higher than 50 doesn’t really have any additional protection as far as we can tell. So, if it says SPF 70 but no broad coverage, don’t buy it!

4. Put it on Before You Hit the Beach and then Keep Reapplying!!

Sunscreen needs a little time (15-30 minutes) to absorb in order to be effective. Don’t wait until you are already in the sun to put it on your kids. Apply it before you leave the house so that they will be protected from the harmful UV rays the entire time they are in the sun. Remember to keep reapplying it as well. Once and done is not going to work. Most sunscreens need to be Little girl with bottle of sun cream sitting at tropical beachreapplied after two hours. However, if your child is swimming or sweating, you should reapply it sooner.

Check out the AAP Sun Safety Guideline Information Sheet for Parents for more information on sun protection. Remember…protecting your child’s skin from burns today will protect him/her from skin cancer later in life. It really is that important!

From The Mom in Me, MD