Whether it's sunny, cold or overcast, dermatologists recommend lathering on sunscreen year-round.
Allison Divers with the Art and Science of Dermatology on Brambleton Avenue in Roanoke County says people should get in the habit of wearing sunscreen no matter what the weather is.
She shares some helpful ways you can avoid getting burned or damaged skin:
- American Academy of Dermatology recommends an SPF of at least 30.
- Pair sunscreen with hats, clothing and shade for maximum protection.
- Reapply when you're in the water, sweating or in direct sunlight.
- Take advantage of shaded areas at the park, school functions or sporting events.
Divers says years of skin damage can lead to cancer. Melanoma is the deadliest form. Many, but not all cases, start as an abnormal-looking mole. Here are the signs (The ABCDEs) that you need to see a dermatologist:
- Asymmetry: One half of the spot doesn't match the other half.
- Border: The edges are notched or ragged and irregular.
- Color: Varied shades of tan, black and brown.
- Diameter: Greater than 6 millimeters, a little bigger than a pencil eraser.
- Evolving: Change in size, shape or shade of color.
Divers says it's important to examine your body every month to spot and potentially cancerous areas.
She adds that anyone is at risk for skin damage or cancer. Those who are fair-skinned and sensitive to the sun should exercise extra caution. But Divers says people who only tan and do not burn are not any safer. She has diagnosed patients in their early 30s with darker complexions with melanoma.