How Does the Sun Change Your Skin?
Spending time in the sun can have a significant impact on your skin, particularly when the sunlight is more intense during the summer. Some of the changes are quick and obvious, but others can remain hidden for a long time.
Tanning and Sunburn
Two of the most obvious effects of sun exposure are tanning and sunburn. Both are caused when the skin is damaged by the UV rays in sunlight. Some of us respond to this damage by producing extra melanin, which darkens the skin. However, if we have fair skin or spend too long in the sun, we can end up with a sunburn. The tan or sunburn will fade, but the damage that was done to our skin will remain and could cause serious problems later on.
Freckles and Pigmentation
Other changes in pigmentation can also happen as a result of sun exposure. If you have freckles then it means there are patches of your skin that respond to sunlight more easily. Sunshine causes these areas to produce more melanin, creating freckles
. The freckles may fade or even disappear completely in winter or if you avoid the sun. However, other changes in pigmentation such as age spots can be more permanent. Age spots or sun spots are small patches of darker pigmentation that can develop after many years of sun exposure.
Signs of ageing such as wrinkles are closely associated by the amount of time we spend in the sun. If you get a lot of sunshine then you are more likely to see the signs of ageing earlier and to develop them more severely, especially if you did not use sun protection.
Skin Cancer and Other Conditions