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Your Health

How much do you know about sunscreen?

Test your knowledge of this summer necessity by selecting the best answer for these questions.

1. Who needs to use sunscreen?
a. People with blond or red hair
b. People with fair skin
c. Anyone more than 6 months old
d. Teenagers

2. What should you look for when buying sunscreen?
a. Broad spectrum protection
b. SPF of at least 15
c. Water resistant protection if you'll be swimming or sweating
d. All the above

3. When should you apply sunscreen?
a. The night before
b. 30 minutes before you go outside
c. After swimming or exercising
d. B and C

4. How should sunscreen be applied?
a. Quickly
b. Thickly
c. Lightly
d. Thinly

5. If you are prone to adolescent or adult acne, which sunscreen is the best choice?
a. One that is expensive
b. One that is oil-based
c. One that is water-based
d. A and B

6. What can unprotected exposure to the sun help cause?
a. Skin cancer
b. Premature skin wrinkles and sagging
c. Weakened immune system
d. All the above

7. Which of these medications may increase your risk for sunburn?
a. Certain antibiotics
b. Ibuprofen
c. Certain diuretics
d. All the above

8. What is the difference between an SPF 30 and an SPF 15 sunscreen?
a. SPF 30 protects twice as long
b. SPF 30 protects half as long
c. SPF 30 protects against about 4 percent more UVB rays
d. SPF 30 protects 30 times as long

9. Which of the following is not true regarding tanning beds?
a. They're safer than the sun
b. They can expose users to more radiation than the sun
c. They can cause skin cancer
d. They can cause skin aging


1. C - Anyone more than 6 months old. Children younger than 6 months should not be exposed to the sun.

2. D - All the above.

3. D - B and C.

4. B - Thickly. Adults should use 1 oz., or a handful of sunscreen, to cover the entire body.

5. C - One that is water based. Cost is not an indication of effectiveness.

6. D - All the above. It can also cause painful sunburns.

7. D - All the above. If you're taking medication with a photo sensitivity label, avoid the sun, wear protective clothing, and use sunscreen rigorously.

8. C - It protects against about 4 percent more UVB rays. To be effective, sunscreen should be reapplied every two hours. SPF 15 sunscreens filter out 93 percent of UVB rays. SPF 30 sunscreens protect against 97 percent of UVB rays.

9. A - They're safer than the sun. They can also cause eye damage, including cataracts and eye cancer.