All you have to do is spend a few minutes watching the news to learn that many places are experiencing historical heat waves this summer. During the hot weather, you should certainly apply plenty of sunscreen to avoid getting burnt. You should also make sure your lips are properly shielded. Why is it so important to protect your lips from the sun, and how can you do so? This blog post offers practical information.
The Dangers of Overexposure to the Sun
The skin on the lips is thinner, less pigmented, and more delicate than the skin on the rest of the body. Its unique structure makes it more vulnerable to harm when it is overexposed to the sun’s UVA and UVB rays.
Just one incidence of overexposure could cause your lips to suffer burns and feel quite uncomfortable. Repeated sunburns over the years could drastically increase your chances of cancer! The lower lip is especially vulnerable because the way it is angled allows more sunlight to hit it.
How to Protect Your Lips
Here are some simple and easy steps that you can take to protect your lips from the sun:
You could apply regular sunscreen to your lips. However, it can taste bad, and it has the potential to irritate delicate skin. As an alternative, wear a lip balm that contains SPF.
You are likely to come across some lip balms with SPF 15 and others with SPF 30. Try to choose the latter because it blocks out a greater portion of the sun’s harmful radiation.
Do Not Forget to Reapply
Perhaps the most common mistake that people make with their SPF products is that they forget how important it is to reapply at regular intervals. Normal sunscreen should be reapplied every 2 hours (more often if your skin is wet for any reason). Lip balms should be reapplied once an hour because they can easily wear off as you eat, drink, and lick your lips.
Wear a Hat
A wide-brimmed hat can cast a bit of shade on your face and protect your lips from harm. Try to choose one that features a UPF of 50 or higher. Most sunhats and baseball caps are acceptable choices.
Stay Inside During the Hottest Part of the Day
Be sure to check the UV index before you head outside; it tends to be at its peak during the middle of the day. It would be best to stay indoors between 11 A.M. and 4 P.M. If your schedule necessitates that you go out, try to remain in shady areas as much as possible.
Your lips are a precious part of both your smile and your oral health! Protect them so you can keep smiling happily all summer long.
Meet the Practice
New Haven Dental Group has been serving our area for more than 40 years. We proudly provide oral cancer screenings and numerous other services that are designed to help patients stay healthy. If you have questions about how you can care for your smile, we are ready to answer them. Contact our Woodbridge office at 203-409-2535.