Oral Sunblock – Is It Really Necessary?
Most people attribute the negative consequence of being under the sun to merely just sunburn, an effect which is apparent almost immediately following sun exposure. Unbeknown to many, excessive sunlight exposure also leaves a more permanent effect- premature skin aging.
Sunlight that reaches our skin consists of two types of ultraviolet (UV) rays: ultraviolet A (UVA) and ultraviolet B (UVB). The wavelengths of these rays are shorter than visible light, making them invisible to the naked eye.
UVA has a longer wavelength as compared to UVB. It penetrates deeper into the skin (the dermis layer) and exerts photo-aging effects over time, leading to loss of skin elasticity, sun spots, wrinkling, sagging and accentuated skin furrows. On the other hand, UVB which has a relatively shorter wavelength damages the superficial layer of the skin (the epidermis layer) resulting in sunburn, turning your skin lobster red. Both these UV rays share a common terrifying effect, where overexposure increases the risk of genetic mutation, subsequently leading to skin cancer.
Hiding yourself indoors is by no means a solution to this problem as UVA rays can still penetrate through a glass window. Moreover, appropriate exposure to sunlight is known to be beneficial as it provides us with the sunshine vitamin. UVB rays are required by our body to make Vitamin D which plays many important bodily functions such as maintenance of bone health, cognitive abilities and psychological wellbeing. Bearing these in mind, it is important to strive for balanced sun exposure obtaining its benefits but not exposing one to the undesirable effects of sunlight. With sufficient protection from the harmful rays, one can can still go about in the day under the sun.
When we think about sun protection, the first thing that comes to mind naturally would be topical sunscreen. While these sunscreens have been proven to be beneficial, they do have their limitations, such as the greasy white unnatural finish on the skin and the hassle of re-application. Furthermore, these sunscreens are only limited to the areas of skin that it is applied on. This is where oral sunblock has a pivotal role. It can complement the use of topical sunscreen, creating an additive benefit on top of what can be gained from using topical sunscreen alone. Merely taking a pill will provide head to toe skin protection from the sun. Our product Skin ProteXTM is a simple, quick and easy oral sunblock in providing a wholesome inside-out approach to sun protection.
Written by Angel Lee Angel is a certified Pharmacist. She received her B.Pharm from Monash University.