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Can Indoor Lighting Damage Your Skin?


It has long been known that the sun’s rays damage the skin and can cause all kinds of health problems. But simply avoiding the sun may not be enough. Indoor lighting is also a source of harmful emissions that can also cause damage to the skin and cause pre-mature aging.

The Dangers of Indoor Lighting

Most lighting found indoors emits blue rays. These include lamps, televisions, overhead lights and computer screens. These blue rays can penetrate the skin and destroy the body’s natural antioxidants. Much like the sun’s UVA and UVB rays, blue rays cause free radicals damage to the skin and body. The most common side effect of indoor lighting is dry and dull skin. Fine lines and wrinkles may also appear over time.

Fluorescent Lighting and Radiation

There are many notions about whether fluorescent lights emit radiation. This type of lighting is becoming more and more popular because of its energy-saving abilities. It can now be found at home in addition to the office. A fluorescent bulb lights when the electrical charge ignites a gas. That gas then emits a small amount of ultraviolet radiation. The UV rays are supposedly stopped when they hit the dye covering the bulb.

However, some of the UV radiation manages to pass through. This amount is relatively small. Damage may occur when excess an amount of time is spent near indoor lighting. When spending large amounts of time under fluorescent lights, make sure the lights have plastic diffuser over them. This can reduce the emission even further.

The Good News

Although there is concern about the effects of indoor lighting on the skin, it is far less than the damage that is caused by the sun. It is estimated that a full eight hour workday under indoor lighting is equivalent to roughly one minute of sun exposure. Consistent, repeated exposure every day for years is the most likely to cause severe damage. Moderate exposure typically results in a dulling of the skin that goes away after exposure is stopped. There has been no link between indoor lighting and melanoma.

Protection and Prevention

The best way to guard against radiation from indoor lighting is to wear sunscreen every day. Make sure all lights are covered with additional guards to block even more of the rays. Be sure to eat a balanced meal to give the body the tools it needs to fight off free radical damage. This includes eating foods high in antioxidants such as berries and green leafy vegetables. Other foods that are good for the skin include oranges, whole grains, fish, green tea and dark-colored natural foods.




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