We probably all apply sun cream when we hit the beach, but how many of us wear it all day, every day?
A photo of a truck driver published in the New England Journal of Medicine might make us all think twice about going without sun cream.
The image is a close-up of a 69-year-old trucker’s face and is clear proof of how much the sun’s rays can damage our skin.
See the photo here: http://www.nejm.org/doi/full/10.1056/NEJMicm1104059
The man, who worked as a delivery driver for 28 years, showed signs “consistent with the Favre-Racouchot syndrome of photodamaged skin, known as dermatoheliosis.”
This prolonged exposure to UVA rays (which can travel through glass windows, travel through clouds and penetrate the skin more deeply than UVB rays) has left one side of his face severely wrinkled, while the other side remains much smoother and more in line with his age.
Suddenly all those jokes about a trucker’s tan don’t seem so funny…
According to the medical journal, the skin’s appearance is the result of a thickening in the epidermis and the destruction of the skin’s elastic fibres.
Unfortunately, UVA rays make up 95% of the earth’s UV radiation. As well as aging the skin, they also increase skin cancer risk. Luckily, there is a simple solution: wear a sunscreen that blocks both UVA and UVB rays every day even when it’s cloudy (and probably cover both sides of your face, just to be sure).