Wearing sunscreen is especially important for people with inflammatory arthritis and conditions such as lupus, because their medications or disease may make them extra sun-sensitive. But choosing the right sunscreen may not be so simple. The good news is sunscreen labels – governed by federal regulations and designed to rein in over-reaching claims like “waterproof” and “sunblock” – can help you pick the best protection for your skin. Here’s what to look for on sunscreen labels.
By now, most people know it’s a bad idea to head out in the sun for hours of sunbathing to earn a golden tan. But there’s more to sun protection than just dabbing on any old sunblock. And, particularly for people with specific autoimmune disorders, protection from the sun should be a serious perennial consideration.
“Everyone should get into habit of wearing sunblock year round, but people with autoimmune issues need to be much more vigilant about covering up their skin,” says dermatologist Jeannette Graf, MD, assistant professor of dermatology at Mount Sinai School of Medicine.