Don’t Inhale Spray Sunscreens

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Slow response time from the FDA has caused Consumer Reports to pressure them on the safety of spray-on sunscreens.

Spray-on sunscreens are everywhere and ultra convenient, but they’re also dangerous, says Consumer Reports, even as parents work hard at protecting kids from the sun’s harmful rays. Three years ago the Food and Drug Administration asked manufacturers to prove that spray sunscreens were effective, but the studies are still ongoing. The slow response time from the FDA caused Consumer Reports to pressure them to revamp their sunscreen regulations, in an attempt to limit spray sunscreens due to the risk of inhaling potentially risky titanium dioxide, a possible carcinogen. The word is: don’t inhale spray sunscreens. Plenty of parents use spray sunscreens on their kids, asking them to shield their faces when they spray. But any inhalation of the ingredients can be harmful to your health, Consumer Reports says.

To be on the safe side of the issue, here are tips:

• Avoid direct contact with the sun when possible
Wear hats, clothing layers, use sun shade.

• Layer on sunscreen thickly
Make sure you can see the sunscreen on the skin, and it’s thickly applied — especially on the shoulders, nose, ears, tops of feet

• Don’t spray it on the face
To avoid inhaling it, spray in on your hands then rub on your body

• Reapply often, every few hours and always after water
All sunscreens wear off in water — they are not waterproof. They are water resistant only as far as any lotion is.

Susan Swindell Day is the editor in chief of Nashville Parent and the mom of four amazing kids.

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