Regional Medical Center of San Jose
Regional Medical Center of San Jose offers world-class healthcare to residents throughout the greater San Jose community.

Everything You Need to Know About Sunscreen Use for Skin Cancer Prevention

Skin cancer is the most common type of cancer, but there are steps individuals can take to reduce their risk of this life-threatening disease. Residents of sunny San Jose can manage their skin health by regularly applying appropriate sunscreen products. If you have any questions about the proper use of sunscreen, a physician at Regional Medical Center of San Jose will be happy to assist you.

Knowing When to Use Sunscreen

It’s often thought that sunscreen isn’t necessary on chilly or cloudy days. But in fact, even on a cloudy day, up to 80 percent of ultraviolet (UV) rays from the sun can penetrate a person’s skin, according to the American Academy of Dermatology. Since sunscreen can only protect you from skin cancer when it’s applied properly, it’s important to apply it every day that you intend on being outdoors longer than a few minutes. This includes the time spent in your car; UV rays can penetrate your car windows and damage your skin.

Selecting Sunscreen Products

Dermatologists recommend using sunscreen that offers broad spectrum protection, which means that it guards against both UV-A and UV-B rays. Choose a water-resistant sunscreen with a Sun Protection Factor (SPF) of at least 30.

Applying Sunscreen Products

Apply sunscreen to all areas of exposed skin, including your ears, face, and hands. Every time you apply sunscreen, you should use about one ounce, which is about the amount that would fill a shot glass. Individuals who use less sunscreen than this aren’t getting the full protection of the product. It’s best to apply sunscreen about 20 minutes before you plan on going outdoors and to reapply it every two hours. If you’re going swimming or sweating profusely, reapply sunscreen more frequently. Remember to apply lip balm with a high SPF to protect your lips. Additionally, ophthalmologists recommend wearing sunglasses with UV protection.

Prevention is always preferable, but when you or a loved one does require cancer care, Regional Medical Center of San Jose is here to help. In addition to our oncology services, our hospital in San Jose is a leading provider of breast care, robotic surgery, stroke care, and heart health services. To request a referral to one of our providers, call (888) 762-8881 and speak with a registered nurse.