FRIDAY, June 25 (HealthDay News) -- Sunscreen use has become
routine for many Americans, but it's often applied incorrectly,
according to a Saint Louis University expert.
"I've seen mothers at the park spraying sun block on babies from too far away to do any good. Others dab on too little to protect themselves adequately from the sun's rays," Dr. Quenby Erickson, an assistant professor of dermatology, said in a university news release.
"If you've gone through the admirable effort of buying and applying sunscreen, make sure it's working while you wear it," she added.
Erickson offered the following advice:
- Use enough sunscreen, for starters. Adults need the equivalent
of a shot glass full of sunscreen to cover their whole body. Cover
all the skin that's exposed to the sun, including your ears, the
back of your neck, the tops of your feet and, if you're balding,
the top of your head.
- Apply sunscreen 30 minutes before going outdoors, and reapply
every two hours and after swimming.
- When using spray sunscreens, hold the bottle two to three
inches away from the body. Rub spray sunscreens into the skin for
- Check your sunscreen's expiration date -- it can be less
effective after that time.
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration has more about