Let’s talk about the sun! It gives us life, food, and warmth, it also gives us warm days by the pool, and dare we say it, a tan. BUT it’s also damaging in many ways, too! Continued exposure to the sun can cause a myriad of issues for the skin, and over time, these accumulate and can cause premature aging of the skin. The signs of premature aging can include wrinkles, dark spots, freckles, and even skin cancers. Tan skin is NOT healthy skin! We’ll repeat it over and over, and there is no such thing as a “base tan”. Moreover, a sunburn is a sure sign of immediate damage to the skin, and when you look at those sunburned cells under a microscope, you can see visible damage to both your cells, and the blood vessels.
While avoiding the sun (and still living your life) is impossible, um, hello, drive much!?, there are things we can do to help reverse that damage! As we start to head into cooler weather, and less direct exposure to the sun, now is the perfect time to start thinking about what you can do! First and foremost, everyone, everywhere, should be wearing a sunscreen with an SPF of at least 30 every day. Everywhere. All over. Yes, even in the winter. Yes, even if you “aren’t going out for long”. Your car window intensifies the sun’s rays, and we see more skin cancers on the left side of the body, then the right for that very reason! There are tons of daily skincare products on the market that include SPF as an active ingredient, so you don’t even need to worry about the hassle of adding another product to your regimen! Some of the most beautiful, healthy skin we see in our office belongs to patients who will tell that their “secret” is sunscreen. Yep, JUST sunscreen.
OK, so we have the basics, sunscreen, got it, you heard us. The damage has already started, what can I do!? Well, for starters, sunscreen (duh), but beyond that, we have many different types of treatments for sun-damaged skin, ranging from non, and minimally invasive, all the way to surgery. Most of these treatments require a series, and routine maintenance is key. Every skin type has different needs though, so it’s best to come in and tailor a plan that’s unique to you and gives you all the benefits that your skin needs. These might include lasers, micro needling, chemical peels, or radiofrequency treatment. Maybe it’s a combination of a few! We don’t typically recommend these types of treatments if you are planning to be in the sun again, so now is a great time to start working on your treatment plan, while the weather is milder, and the outdoor BBQ’s and water park adventures are few and far between.
While staying out of the sun is the best way to combat these dangers, that’s nearly impossible, so it’s important that we take in those rays with caution, and in moderation. Sunscreen, protective clothing, and avoiding the sun during the middle of the day are other great ways to help minimize your risk of complications over time. The safest way to achieve that beautiful, tanned skin you desire, is to find a safe, organic blend of sunless tanning spray, applied either at a salon, or at home. Of course, you still need to avoid sunless tanners in the weeks after surgery, as you don’t want to risk your scar taking in the pigment, so make sure and speak with your physician, or provider, before doing so!
Talking will not cost you anything, as we offer complimentary consultations, and all of us here at Snyder Plastic Surgery at the Breast and Body Center of Austin want to ensure you are fully educated about everything available to you! Our team of providers are board certified, educated in the safest, most current technologies, and have proven success rates. We encourage you to come in and talk to us about your concerns, no matter how big, or how small. We can work with you to come up with a tailored plan to meet your needs and goals and help you to RENEW YOU!