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Block Up -sunblock for summer

posted May 7, 2012, 12:02 PM by Martine Hutton   [ updated May 9, 2012, 11:42 AM ]

Block Up!

Lazy days at the beach and fun on the boat, Charleston is indeed one of the most beautiful places to live. Parents often ask Pediatricians what is the best sunscreen for their baby/child, or what age is appropriate to begin using sunscreen. The following are some important facts to live by and websites to visit.

 First, some education about sun rays. UVA rays cause prematurity of skin- wrinkles, age spots, and can pass through window glass. UVB rays cause sunburn, but can be blocked by window glass. Even on a cloudy day, the American Academy of Dermatology states 80% of the sun’s UV rays can pass through!  Sand reflects 25%, so your child is NOT completely protected under a tent!  Thus, when selecting a sunscreen, make sure to choose a broad-spectrum protection against UVA and UVB rays.  In general, solar radiation is at their harshest from 10AM-4PM.

For babies less than 6 months the American Academy of Pediatrics recommends to dress infants in lightweight long pants, long-sleeved shirts, brimmed hats and avoid direct sun exposure.  SPF-15 can be used on the back of hands and face if adequate clothes/shade are not available.

                For all other children, the American Academy of Dermatology suggest using SPF-15 or greater with UVA and UVB protection and apply 1 ounce every 2 hours. Reapply after swimming and sweating. Protect self with light-colored tight weave clothing and sunglasses.

Recommended Sunblock:

-                                                                                                                                                                            California Baby- this one is for all-natural lovers!

o   Also see- Badger

-          Luca -  hypoallergenic, broad spectrum

o   Created by locals from Charleston!

-          Blue Lizard- micronized 6-10% Zinc Oxide

o   240 minutes water-resistant!

-          Bull Frog-  PABA free

-          No-Ad – recommended by Skin Care Foundation


What’s coming soon from the FDA:

      In June 2012 there will be changes to labels on sunscreen bottles. Labels must state whether the lotion protects against UVA/UVB rays. They will also not be allowed to claim they are waterproof/sweat proof since all sunscreen eventually washes off! Instead, sunscreen can be “water-resistant up to 40-80 minutes,” states the AAD.


Websites to visit:

Luca sunscreen:

“Sunscreens”: -care/sunscreens

“Summer Safety Tips-Part 1”: American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP)

“Daily skin care for toddlers”: American Academy of Dermatology

“Safety and Prevention: Teens and Sun: Keeping Them Safe without Ruining their Fun”- AAP


Protect your largest organ, your skin, and block up this summer!      ~ Nicole Lukasavage, PA-S2

Many of you have met Nicole in our office as she completed her physician assistant rotation in pediatrics.  She is also a lifeguard, water safety instructor  and skilled swimming instructor- so if any family is interested in swim lessons please call our office for her contact information.