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Recognize sun-damaged skin

If you think of the sun as a summertime beauty aid, it's time to think again. The sun's rays can cause your skin to show signs of aging. And that damage is more than skin-deep.

Aging skin

3 changes linked to sun exposure

1. Actinic keratosis.

Small. Rough or scaly. Usually painless (might itch or burn). Can be precancerous.

Pink, red, brown or flesh-toned.

2. Age spots (also called liver spots).

Flat. Larger than freckles. Harmless.

Light brown to black.

3. Solar elastosis.

Thick, dry, wrinkled and less elastic skin. Harmless.

Skin looks leathery and weather-beaten.

Talk with your doctor about any skin changes that concern you.

Sources: American Academy of Dermatology; American Cancer Society; National Institutes of Heatlh

Are you skin cancer-savvy?

In addition to causing signs of premature aging, the sun's rays have also been linked to cancerous skin changes.

That's why it's vital to be safe in the sun. Not sure what to change? Check out this infographic.

reviewed 11/15/2018

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