Frequent sun damage from its UV rays can have long-term effects on the skin in a process called photoaging. But how does this occur exactly, how can you prevent it, and what should you do if you’ve already been experiencing its symptoms? Below, we’ll explain why photoaging happens and provide crucial advice on prevention and treatment.

Skin Revitalization at The Parker Skin and Aesthetic Clinic

Unchecked skin damage from the sun can lead to cancers like carcinoma and melanoma, as well as actinic keratosis and worsened rosacea. Even when these medical conditions do not occur, sun damage often leads to confidence-hurting cosmetic issues like excess wrinkles, lines, sunspots/brown spots, rashes, spider veins, hyperpigmentation, and other symptoms of photoaging.

At The Parker Skin and Aesthetic Clinic, our medical and cosmetic dermatologists have the advanced training and experience necessary to properly diagnose this wide range of conditions. From there, we’ll be able to put you on the right path to improved skin.

How Does the Sun Damage the Skin?

The sun emits two UV rays that negatively affect the skin: ultraviolet A (UVA) and ultraviolet B (UVB). Both interfere with skin cell functionality, such as their DNA and the ability to regenerate (as in cancers). Additionally, photoaging can lead to pigmentation errors and decreased elasticity, which causes the wrinkles and lines. Tanning beds create artificial UV light that is also dangerous for the skin over time.

How Do I Prevent Photoaging and Other Sun Damage?

Luckily, there are plenty of ways to enjoy a good hike, lounging on the beach, and other outdoor activities while keeping yourself safe and extending your skin’s youthfulness. Here are some essential tips:

  • Always wear broad-spectrum, water-resistant sunscreen when spending time outside. This should be SPF 30 or higher. Don’t forget to reapply throughout the day.
  • Avoid going out when UVA and UVB are strongest, typically between 10 a.m. and 4 p.m.
  • Wear longer shirts and pants when possible, as well as a wide-brimmed hat. Some clothing brands are specifically designed for UV protection, including a few types of swimming attire!
  • Avoid tanning in the sun and tanning beds. Stay in the shade when possible.
  • If you notice redness or burning, it’s time to head back indoors.

Which Procedures Are Best for Treating Sun Damage?

More serious medical conditions like skin cancer will require specialized care by our dermatologists. But for concerns like hyperpigmentation, wrinkles, and lines, our aestheticians can perform cosmetic techniques like laser resurfacing, chemical peels, and dermal fillers that can dramatically turn back the clock on photoaging. As an added benefit, many of these same treatments are also used on scars and other blemishes.

Let’s Develop a Treatment Plan

If you believe you’re dealing with the effects of sun damage, contact The Parker Skin and Aesthetic Clinic today to schedule your initial consultation with one of our dermatologists or aestheticians. Together, we’ll develop a comprehensive treatment plan based on your symptoms and other patient-specific factors.