Friday, August 10, 2012

Fun Facts Friday

In many areas of the US, August can be the hottest month of the summer. In this kind of intense heat your baby’s skin can burn fast. Fact is that even using sunscreen labeled specifically for children does not mean your getting the protection your baby’s skin needs. 

Here are a couple of important things to keep in mind to help insure your child gets the best skin protection possible this summer. 
UVB Rays are the shallow penetrating rays of the sun. They are responsible for tanning and even burning the skin it can also contribute to skin cancer and aging. UVB protection is measured by the Sun Protection Factor better known as SPF. The number that follows signifies how many times longer you can stay in the sun without getting burnt as apposed to going out without any sunscreen.

UVA Rays penetrate much deeper and they do not physically tan or burn the skin, but they are the rays that are the primary responsible for skin cancer and premature aging. Because the UVA Rays are so powerful SPF will not protect against them. There are only four ingredients proven to protect against UVA Rays; zinc oxide, titanium dioxide, avobenzone, and mexoryl. Be cautious however as avobenzone and mexoryl are highly unstable and break down quickly in the sunlight. When selecting a sunscreen that will protect your little one from the harsh sun parents should look for sunscreens that contain no less 7% zinx oxide or titanium dioxide.  Even in direct sun these ingredients will protect against UVA rays for at least two hours.

Be sure your not using the best products on your baby's precious skin...check out  EWG's 2012 Sunscreen Guide (Environmental Working Group) 

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