While a day in the sun can be fun, too much can be dangerous. However, a good sunscreen can block 97 percent or more of the sun’s radiation. The sun gives off ultraviolet A and B rays also known as UVA and UVB. UVA and UVB rays are significant factors in damaging your skin. Too much sun can cause skin discolorations and your skin to prematurely age, and too much sun can cause damage from sunburn to skin cancer. Over 80 percent of skin cancers affect the head and neck, and the skin around the eyes, especially where the lids and lid corners meet, has a predisposition to cancer. Sunscreen reduces the harmful effects of sun on the skin. It should be applied daily as part of a normal skincare routine, said CEENTA ophthalmologist Usha Reddy, MD. In general, sunscreen should be applied 30 minutes before going out in the sun, and should be reapplied every two hours. Sunscreen should be applied to the skin around the eyes, but people should be careful not to get it into their eyes, Dr. Reddy said. If they do, they should flush and irrigate their eyes with water. People should still wear sunscreen if they wear eye makeup. Makeup does not have the same protective qualities as sunscreen, and sunscreen will still be effective if worn with makeup. The American Academy of Dermatology recommends using sunscreen with a Sun Protection Factor (SPF) of 30 or higher. Do you have more questions or concerns about the skin around your eyes? Call 704-295-3000 to schedule an appointment with an ophthalmologist in any one of our eye care offices across North Carolina.This blog is for informational purposes only. For specific medical questions, please consult your physician.