Suncreen is the Best Topical Medication

Suncreen is the Best Topical Medication

June 8, 2015
By Robert Grant, MD
The Plastic Surgery Channel

We all want young, beautiful skin and will entertain any product that even remotely promises great results. From the most expensive and science-backed products to the least expensive drug store finds, all are trying to achieve the same thing: turn back the clock on sun damage!

Dr. Robert Grant of New York City helps his patients restore youthfulness to their skin while promoting the best topical medication anywhere: SUNSCREEN!

Not All Sunscreens are Created Equal

The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has stepped in and is making changes to not only standards in sunscreen testing but regulations on labeling to make it easier for consumers to decide which sunscreen is best for them.

To prevent sun damage and premature aging, make sure you see the words “broad spectrum”.  This means the sunscreen can protect your skin from both types of harmful UV rays — the UVA rays and the UVB rays.

If the sunscreen offers water resistance, you will see “40 minutes” or “80 minutes” after the words “water resistant”.  This tells you how long your skin can be wet or sweaty before you need to reapply. The main point, says Grant, reapply often!

Two words you will no longer see on sunscreen labels:

“Sunblock” – This was misleading to consumers.  The new word is “sunscreen” because no sunscreen can completely block the sun.

“Waterproof” – Now you will now see “water resistant”.  No sunscreen is waterproof.

Skin’s Worst Enemy: The Sun

From the time we’re born, any exposure to the sun is causing some form of damage to the skin. Scientific studies have showed that massive, unprotected sun exposure in the teens and 20’s is the primary cause of sun damage that appears starting in your 40’s. While that tan might look nice for a couple weeks, it’s not worth it in the long run. Grant says always look for a sunscreen with an SPF of at least 30.

Here shows a comparison in UV light how much protection sunscreen provides:

DSC656

Staying indoors doesn’t have to be the answer. Sunscreen has and continues to be an effective shield against the harmful UV rays emitted by the sun. Researchers are continually improving the science of sunscreen to provide even better protection.

“You need sunblock on. It’s the best topical medication I know of,” says Dr. Grant. “The science of sunscreen, as boring as it might sound, is really very exciting and one of the innovations that I point to in making a real difference in care with my patients.”

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