Should you ever go outside without sunscreen?

UC expert featured in Health Magazine article

Most people are mindful to use sunscreen at the beach or pool, but the need to use it every day has become a matter of debate.

The American Academy of Dermatology advises people should apply sunscreen every day on skin not covered by clothing if they will be outside, but sun safety guidelines in Australia were recently updated and state that some sunscreen-free time outside has benefits, including vitamin D exposure.

Diya Mutasim, MD, professor of dermatology in the University of Cincinnati College of Medicine, told Health Magazine that there "is some advantage in getting exposed to a little sunlight for both vitamin D synthesis and for your mood.”

Mutasim added it's probably unnecessary to apply sunscreen for short bursts of sun exposure, such as walking to and from your car, but being outside without sunscreen for longer periods of time can be a more complicated issue.

Ideally, a person would be able to reap the benefits of the sun without causing changes to their skin's appearance, which can indicate sun damage. The length of time any one person could safely be outside without sunscreen can vary widely, Mutasim said, but anyone planning to be outside for a long time should protect their skin.

Read the Health Magazine article.

Featured photo a top of a person applying sunscreen. Photo/simonkr/iStock.

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