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COLUMBUS, Miss. (WCBI) – The cold weather may finally be out of here for a few months, and children across our are are looking forward to spending long afternoons outdoors.
Turns out that sunburn you got as a toddler could come back to haunt you later in life.

Lather ’em up.

Slather ’em up.

Ignore their protests.

When it comes to damaging your skin, there is nothing like the sun.

Dr. Bethany Hairston is a board certified dermatologist.

She says, “Only a few sunburns in our childhood can greatly affect our chances for skin cancer as adults, and so it is important to start protecting them, you know, their first trip to the pool, like you mentioned, 1 year old.”

And it turns there is an age, that’s just too young for the sun.

Traditional sunscreens are not a good idea for an infant.

Dr. Hairston explains, ” When you use that product on a child who is less than 6 months, it can really irritate their skin, and so for babies I say seek the shade.”

If your little guy has thin hair, there is spray protection that’s good for the scalp and won’t drip in his eyes. For faces, it’s best to get on the stick.

Dr. Hairston says, ” And so for that, I really like these stick types of formulas, and there are different brands, but they are so nice because you can take this, just rub it on their nose, rub it on their cheeks and foreheads and even on the rims of their ears and that way you are not going to get it in their eyes.”

Keep in mind, that pools and perspiration can wash away even the most stubborn creams and sprays.

If you spend any length of time in the water, covering up is a good idea.

Dr. Hairston knows just the thing, ” What these are, are specific shirts that have UPF, which is a sunscreen protective factor built into the clothing, so it goes far beyond the white T-shirt that some people may think is helpful.”

The bottom line, avoid the burn. It will hurt you in the short run and as the years roll by.

Skin cancer continues to be the most common form of cancer.

If caught early, treatment can be very effective, but your best bet is to avoid it all together and protect the skin you are in.

You will look younger and be healthier.

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