Dr. Kevin Foster, MD

Chief of Burn Services

Arizona Burn Center at Valleywise Health answers:

There are really two methods to avoid sun exposure following burn injury. The best way to avoid sun exposure to burn scars and burn wounds is to use sun protective clothing. This is clothing with built-in barriers to ultraviolet radiation. This this prevents this radiation from reaching the skin and causing a sunburn. Some protective clothing is available from a wide variety of manufacturers and in a number of different stores and online.

The second way to avoid sun exposure following burn injury is to use sunscreen. However not all sunscreens are created equal. And a high SPF number does not necessarily guarantee high quality sunscreen. One should seek out sudden screens that are made from either zinc oxide or titanium dioxide or a combination of the two. If one examines the active ingredients in a sunscreen, and it contains anything other than zinc oxide or titanium dioxide that one should not use it. Where usually tell people is that if you look at the active ingredients and you can’t pronounce them easily then they’re not good for you.

So, we want to encourage burn survivors to enjoy life and to get outside. At the same time, we want to make sure that they do not expose their burn scars to unnecessary ultraviolet radiation from sun exposure. Therefore, we got 25 lucky recommend some protective clothing under most circumstances. If that is not appropriate, then using sunscreen made of zinc oxide or titanium dioxide or a combination with an SPF number of at least 50 is highly recommended. Have fun and be safe.