- Falconally in the United States is regulated by the FDA, but US sunscreen may not protect us as much as you can find in other countries.
- Of the 20 best-selling US parasols, nine did not meet European standards.
- On the video above, a dermatologist dr. Seemal Desai explains what he needs to look for in the sun protection that protects skin rackets that cause skin cancer.
The video transcript is followed.
A storyteller: In 2017, researchers tested 20 of the best-selling American umbrellas. The good news is that 19 of them met FDA standards. Bad news? Nine of them did not meet European standards. It is said that different countries have different rules for what constitutes a safe protective sunscreen, and American protective creams may not protect Americans as they can. When I am lying in the sun, our skin absorbs two types of UV light. UVA and UVB rays. UVB light is more energy and can cause burns while UVA penetrates deeper under the skin and can damage the skin cells along the lower layer of your epidermis.
Desai: We know that UVB rays are rays that cause burns from the sun. But UVA rays are zones that can really cause skin cancer, so you actually want to cover the spectrum on both of them. I think that many people fall into the misconception that I'm not sunny, so I'm not prone to get skin cancer that is really not true.
Preacher: The biggest concern with the US sunscreen is how much they protect against UVA rays that cause cancer. For decades, FDA regulations required that sun protection be protected against UVB, but not necessarily against UVA. In the meantime, rates for melanoma, a dangerous form of skin cancer, continued to climb to the United States. Then, in 2012, the FDA updated its labeling and testing regulations so manufacturers now allow customers to know if its protection protects against UVB and UVA. For example, the wide-spectrum label on your sunglass means. Although this is a good first step, there is still no regulation as to how much UVA protects. So there is no way to say it.
Desai: Here in the United States, I think we need to be aware of the fact that when the sunscreen says a wide spectrum, protection against UVA and UVB, it means you will get protection from these air. However, what does not mean is that it will block all the rays.
Preacher: And there are also American sunglasses.
Desai: And I will say that I think that we are getting from other countries around the world, especially some of our European partners, to get new sunscreen ingredients. Overall, there were not many changes in sunbathing in the US and of which our sunscreen products have been in the last few years.
Preacher: The FDA has approved 16 active ingredients that protect against UV radiation. But only some protect against UVB and UVA air. For comparison, Europe requires that all of its more than 20 active ingredients protect both of them.
Desai: Currently, the American Academy of Dermatology and other organizations are really advocating for the FDA that they need to really accelerate the process of approving new sun protection ingredients. Because with these ingredients we can probably get even better coverage and better protection, and perhaps get something that is easier to apply, it's easier on the skin, which has no harmful side effects for patients.
Preacher: You can buy sun protection from other countries online. But if you plan to stick with the US sunscreen, look for a broad label for the spectrum and do not buy anything below the SPF 30.
Desai: The SPF is bigger, definitely better. But we definitely do not want someone to go under 30 years old and consider whether you have someone who has a history of melanoma, if you use SPF 30, you block, say, 98% of the harmful air. However, what about the remaining 2%? That 2% may be something that might be a potential to put you at risk in the way.
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