Photo proof of sun’s aging effects on face
Want to see the age damage that sun can cause -- even through a closed car window? Check out the photo on the left of a 69-year-old truck driver that was recently published in the New England Journal of Medicine. All those wrinkles and sags are thanks to the sun’s ultraviolet A rays that pass unimpeded through glass.
“The damage on one side if his face is mostly from [sun] exposure,” said Dr. Jennifer Gordon, a dermatologist at Northwestern University who took the photo and published the case study. “It is surprising how much more exposure you do get on the side of your body towards the window in whichever side of the car you most commonly are on.”
While ultraviolet B rays -- the kind that cause sunburns -- don’t penetrate through closed car windows, UVA rays can, and both UVB and UVA rays are associated with skin cancer. But most drivers don’t think to wear sunscreen, especially when they have the windows closed.
This particular man drove a delivery truck for 28 years and developed a thickening of his skin’s upper epidermis layer from sun exposure as well as a destruction of elastic fibers beneath the skin that caused sagging. He told Gordon he never wore sunscreen while driving his truck.
That’s something Gordon recommends to anyone sitting in a car for long drives this summer. The Skin Cancer Foundation also recommends UV film for car windows; a one-time application of the transparent sheets to car windows, performed at many car dealerships, screen out nearly 100 percent of UVA rays without reducing a driver’s visibility. Cost usually runs $100 to $200, depending on the size of the car.Deborah Kotz can be reached at email@example.com. Follow her on Twitter @debkotz2.
May 1, 2013
By Deborah Kotz, Globe Staff The catch-phrase “Boston Strong” has become an emotional rallying cry a …
April 30, 2013
By Deborah Kotz, Globe Staff Wrigley’s launched a caffeinated gum this week called Alert Energy, add …
March 11, 2013
By Deborah Kotz, Globe Staff About 15 percent to 30 percent of people with allergies have allergic r …
March 6, 2013
By Deborah Kotz and Brian MacQuarrie, Globe Staff As Congress debates whether to toughen the nation’ …
March 7, 2013
By Deborah Kotz, Globe Staff No doubt, the biggest appeal of exercise is to build biceps, heart musc …
March 4, 2013
By Deborah Kotz, Globe Staff A survey released today makes the case for exercising to improve sleep …
April 8, 2013
By Deborah Kotz, Globe Staff If you needed another reason to limit your intake of red meat and sugar …
March 29, 2013
By Deborah Kotz, Globe Staff Kids meals at restaurant chains are just as bad as ever, according to a …
Gideon Gil, Health and Science Editor
Elizabeth Comeau, Senior Health Producer