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The Seven Principles for a Life Course of Healthy Skin

As champions of skin health, ASA strives to educate children and teenagers on its importance. Through ASA’s Education Council, the organization has developed an invaluable tool for people of all ages to protect their health and quality of life, now and in the future. The Seven Principles for a Life Course of Healthy Skin are part of a growing worldwide understanding of the importance of skin, beginning with the inclusion of skin health in the World Health Organization’s groundbreaking new Health and Aging Strategy. Skin diseases – including skin cancers – not only have a significant effect on quality of life, they can lead to additional health issues in both children and adults.

ASA created a survey asking dermatologists, family practitioners and pediatricians what they believe are the most important tips for a life course of healthy skin. These principles were developed from the input of over 800 physicians who completed the survey and through a consensus of expert members of ASA’s Education Council.

The Seven Principles for a Life Course of Healthy Skin are:

  1. Minimize Exposure to UV Light. Limit time outdoors between 10 a.m. and 4 p.m., apply broad spectrum sunscreen daily, wear sun protective clothing, and avoid tanning beds and similar artificial tanning devices entirely.
  2. Maintain a healthy lifestyle that includes regular water intake, sleep and exercise. Do not smoke.
  3. Visit your dermatologist once a year or as needed.
  4. Examine your skin daily, and report concerning changes in skin condition and/or color to your dermatologist or health care professional as soon as possible.
  5. Hydrate your skin daily, especially after bathing or showering.
  6. Maintain good hygiene for skin, hair and nails by giving gentle and constant attention to avoid irritation.
  7. Immediately attend to wounds. To avoid infection and scarring, never pick or squeeze blemishes.