Are you exposing your family to cancer causing rays while driving your car?

Recently I purchased a new car, the sun was already set and I did not pay close attention to the tint of the windows. The first time I drove it, my hubby mentioned that we should get some tint because the light pouring in the back of the car was upsetting my little one in his car seat.

I began to think….“Am I protecting my family from cancer causing rays while driving” and “Can I get wrinkles from this”?

The answer may surprise you. The Skin Cancer Foundation claims that historically dermatologists have found that patients with skin damage (cancer, wrinkles, age spots…) occurs most often on the left side of the body in Americans. Why? Because of exposure while driving.

Click to read the Skin Cancer Foundations Article.

Also, the Associated Press wrote an article on this subject in Sept ‘13. They divulge the ugly truth.

“ ..there are no requirements for sun protection [in cars]. That can vary by vehicle, and even by window within a vehicle”.

Yikes, it’s up to me to figure out if UVA and UVB rays are actually being blocked from entering the car windows. Learn what you need to know and how you can protect your family.

Interesting Facts: According Associate Press Article who interviewed Pete Dishart (product lead Pittsburgh Glass).

  1. Plastic inside windshields help to absorb UV rays. Some even block 100% of UVB (sun-burn causing rays) and 98% of UVA (cancer causing rays). That’s an SPF of 50+
  2. Some sunroofs contain same technology…but not all.
  3. Side and rear windows, on average, only block 65 UV rays. That’s only an SPF of 16.

The article doesn’t say whether the side and rear windows block out UVA rays. It’s always scary to think that you could be damaging your DNA and increasing your risk of skin cancer simply by commuting to work everyday or dropping the kids off at school. Also, what is this doing my kiddo?

3 Ways to Limit Your Family’s Exposure:

  1. UV protecting film or tint for your car windows. Both articles mention this as a great way to block excess UVA and UVB rays. Make sure you go a reputable place that knows the tinting laws of that state as well as carries UVA blocking film.
  2. Use a broad spectrum sunscreen with at least  30 SPF. Many options are available on the market but make sure it’s UVA and UVB protectant. You need both! Ladies pay close attention to faces, neck and hands….think cheap wrinkle protection. Sunscreen isn’t that expensive.
  3. When possible wear sun protective clothing.

We spend a lot of time in our cars, let’s protect our faces from pre-maturing wrinkles and our family’s from unnecessary exposure.