Skin types according to the presence of pigments (part two)

Skin Types depending on the Presence of Pigments – Get to know your skin and the ways to protect it

In the first part of the material for skin types we introduced you to the basic phototypes and types of sunlight. The sequel gives more information on exactly how to recognize what type of skin we have, as well as how to be “sunsmart” during the summer heat. 

What is a UV index and where can we find information about it?

To signal people when to be especially careful when staying outside, the World Health Organization has introduced the concept of measuring the intensity of the sun, the so-called. UV index. The UV index is a measure of the strength / intensity of the sun. The higher its value, the more dangerous the sun is and the shorter the possible damage to the skin. The index is usually presented as a number in a triangular frame located on a weather map. The intensity of UV rays outside can vary depending on:

  • Which part of the world are you in?
  • What is the time of year
  • What is the time of day
  • What is the weather
  • What altitude are you at?

On clear summer days, the UV index can reach 7 around noon. Around the equator, the index is usually higher. In the period October-March UV index is usually lower than 3, that is, then even people with fair skin do not need sun protection. Knowing your skin type can determine the degree of your individual risk of skin burns.

To do this, you need to check the UV index for the day, as well as know what your phototype is. The table below shows the degree of risk of skin burns:

How many degrees of risk of burns are there?

  • Low risk – No skin protection required.
  • Medium risk – Take measures around noon and do not spend too much time in the sun without protective equipment.
  • High risk – Cover or look for shade between 11:00 and 15:00. Use at least the 15th factor sunscreen on the areas of skin exposed to the sun.
  • Very high risk – It is mandatory to stay in the shade between 11:00 and 15:00. Use at least the 15th factor sunscreen on the areas of skin exposed to the sun

To be SunSmart * or how to protect ourselves from sunburn?

You can protect your skin from the scorching sun by following a few simple pavilions.

Enjoy the sun in a safe and healthy way by following the SunSmart prescription:

  • Spending time from 11:00 to 15:00 in the shade
  • Try never to get sunburn
  • Try to cover yourself with a hat, T-shirt and glasses
  • Remember to take extra care of the children
  • Use sunscreen with a factor of 15+ or higher

People most at risk for skin cancer usually have:

  • Light skin that burns in the strong sun
  • Red or light skin
  • Lots of moles and freckles
  • Personal or family history of skin cancer
  • Past sunburns on the skin, especially at an early age

And some more useful tips to prevent sunburn:

  • Don’t rely on how you feel – it’s not the UV rays, but the infrared rays that make you feel warm. You can burn very seriously without feeling that you have overdosed on sunbathing.
  • You should not underestimate the cloudy weather – clouds transmit much more UV rays than infrared rays and visible light. Temperature and light may be lower, but the risk of exposure to UV radiation remains high – even on a cloudy day, 80% of UV rays reach the earth’s surface.
  • If you are in the mountains, the danger of burns exists even at low temperatures – with increasing altitude the sun becomes more aggressive – the absorption of UV rays from the skin increases by 4% every 300 meters altitude. The reflection of light from the snow increases the amount of harmful rays to the skin – fresh snow can reflect up to 80% of UV radiation.
  • Standing in the shade in strong sun does not protect you – the shade protects from direct sunlight, but not from reflected rays from the ground (grass reflects 3% of UV rays, sand up to 25%, snow from 30% to 80% and water from 5 % to 90%).
  • If the temperature is high, you are at a higher risk of heat stroke than sunburn – drinking more fluids will help you feel better on hot days.
  • Do not stay in the sun for a long time, even though you have applied a cream with UV protection – sunscreen products are not designed to work for a long time, but to reduce the risk during sun exposure. This requires more frequent use according to your skin type and the strength of the sun’s rays

My skin is dark – am I insured against sunburn – Skin Types depending on the Presence of Pigments

People who have a natural brown complexion or dark skin have more melanin pigment in their cells. This helps protect against UV rays. If your skin is naturally dark or black, you are less at risk of skin cancer. In fact, the chance of getting this disease is about 10-20 times less than that of people with fair skin.

What happens when we expose our skin to the sun? When we expose our skin to the sun, many processes take place in our body, one of which is the formation of vitamin D.

The formation of the vitamin in this way is the main source of extraction in the human body. The darker your skin, the longer you need to stay in the sun to produce enough vitamin D. If you suspect low levels of vitamin D in your body and not enough time outdoors, consult your doctor. In addition to sun exposure, there are other ways to increase vitamin D levels, such as taking a vitamin as a dietary supplement.

Vitamin D can also be obtained through food. It is present in foods such as eggs, high-fat fish, liver fish oil and some types of fortified cereals.

Chronic vitamin D deficiency can cause bone softening. In more serious cases, in children it leads to rickets, and in adults to osseomalacia. The time required for the formation of sufficient vitamin D varies from person to person, depending on the type of skin, the time of day when you are exposed to the sun , the season and from which part of the world you are

This time, as a rule, is always less than the time causing tanning or sunburn. You do not need to spend hours under the sun to feel the benefits of it. In fact, too long a stay in the sun does not mean that more vitamin D is produced. The moment your body reaches the so-called “Healthy” levels of vitamin D, the process automatically stops.

Vitamin D deficiency is common in:

  • People with natural brown or black skin
  • People wearing clothes that completely cover them
  • Older people who don’t go out often
  • Pregnant women
  • Babies breastfed by mothers with vitamin D deficiency

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