When participating in an outdoor activity, especially in the summer, it is necessary to use sunscreens. However, many health specialists advise wearing sunscreens during the whole year with the purpose of minimizing the risk of skin cancer. These lotions inhibit the important production of vitamin D known to prevent the majority of the most dangerous forms of skin cancer.
It's worth admitting there are variable factors effecting the production of vitamin D. For example, geographic latitude, season, cloud cover, time of day, skin type, etc. To get the optimum production of vitamin D, there is a generally accepted guideline of getting direct sun exposure amounting to approximately 15 minutes per day.
One of the oldest kinds of sunscreens recorded was olive oil, which was used in Ancient Greece thousands of years ago. However, it did not have quite the effective sun protection spf that was needed. There was no efficient sunscreen invented until 1944. During the Second World War many solders were getting sunburns. This led to the invention of something that could protect the solders from harmful sun rays.
A pharmacist Benjamin Greene created a sticky red substance that he called a "red vet pet." It was only a start. Later, he created a more user friendly sunscreen. This product was even sold to consumers in and around Miami. So, people were no longer afraid of getting sunburns and there was a great demand for Greene's invention.
Only today, though, can we realize that modern sunscreens and paba free sunscreens have much higher protection characteristics and factors; they cannot only protect people from sunburns but also prevent skin cancer. Modern sunscreens can be sweat- and water-proof.
But there are also some negative effects - for example, the limitations of sun protection spf factor. SPF (or sun protection factor) is known to be the laboratory measure of the sunscreens` efficiency. The higher this factor is, the better protection against ultraviolet radiation you are provided with.
It is important to use sunscreens correctly. You should be aware that using a sunscreen with 20-30 spf will usually give you a substantial protection from sunburns, but prevents skin tanning. Health specialists advise to choose broad spectrum sunscreens providing protection against both ultraviolet A and ultraviolet B.
Sunscreens are recommended for everyone over six months of age. Remember, that knowing your skin type can help you in choosing the appropriate sunscreen.
Nevertheless, it's worth admitting that there're some medical experts who believe sunscreens can give people only a false sense of security by letting people to stay in the sun longer than they should be. They also indicate that sunscreens can only protect from skin burning but not from different kinds of diseases. For example, even if you use a sunscreen, there is a risk of getting a melanoma (because of too much time spent in the sun).
Thus, in spite of all the advantages of sunscreens people still should not rely on them alone for protection. Health experts advise sunscreens to be used along with hats and woven clothes covering the legs and arms.