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Yes, I am more sensitive too. Every summer we go on a fishing trip to Colorado. The only thing exposed is my hands, I am totally covered otherwise. I even put sunscreen on my hands but still seem to get an itchy rash by the end of the trip.
I try to stay out of the sun as much as possible even though I am Native American and tan very easily. We do have access to a pool but try to sit in the shade covered with a long sleeve shirt and hat. It makes me feel tired and draggy the next day.
Thanks Hippiemom and Anna. You get an itchy rash to if you get a sunburn? So I am not a freak of nature? LOL!!
I love summer, it is my favorite time of year. I live in Ontario Canada and our winters start in November and don't end until May,lol. I would live outside all summer long if I could. I hate being cooped up in my house, but I tell you, no way do I want to spend all summer with an itchy red rash all over me.
I will still enjoy the sun, just in moderation and that ticks me off, lol.
This is something I really feel strngly about. I am a lupus patient who cannot go out into the sun. Even the heat in the air is horrid for me. The sun though is an absolute no-no. If ever I need to get from A to B when the sun is out I wear loosely woven long sleeved cotton tops, trousers or a long skirt and have my head covered with a wide brimmed hat. Also I make sure the back of my neck is covered. Plyus lashing of sunblock. I got burnt many years ago on my neck, and had the biggest blister you can imagine and was so ill for a very long time. If ever I go on vacation, it is at the beginning or the end of the year when the weather is cooler and the sun is not so hot and dangerous for me. I still take all of the precuations though. Mind those clouds too, the sun can still penetrate them even if we don't actually see it.
This explains it quite clearly I think:-
UV light damages cells in the skin (keratinocytes) causing them to die. In healthy people without lupus, these dead cells are cleared away quickly and any inflammation caused by the sun-induced skin damage is short-lived (sunburn). However in lupus patients, the skin cells may be more sensitive to sun-induced damage and there is increasing evidence that the dying (apoptotic) cells are not cleared away efficiently. As a result the contents of the dying cells may be released and cause inflammation.
Not all lupus patients are affected by the sun but those of us who are have learned the lesson hard I think. Also the risk of cancer is always present.
One other thing about UV rays is that fluorescent lighting gives off these as well. So if anytime you feel unwell shopping in some supermarkets, or even working under these lights, this is the most likely cause. Again thought, they don't affect everyone like this. Do your eyes ever feel as though you need to squinty them up ? Could be the lights.
If you do have to work under these lights, and they don't have a special lens, you can ask your employer to have them fitted. Thing is though you do really need to wear sunscreen when out shopping in these large stores or working under these lights. A lot of moisturisers now contain a sunscreen, so it is worth looking into if you are affected.
Sorry this is so long, but is is something I am passionate about - you never would have guessed would you hee hee ??
Please take care.
Post Edited (goldenwings) : 4/28/2007 9:32:17 AM (GMT-6)
I am pleased that you have found a suitable sunscreens and are finding the benefits of using them. As sunbeds are a definite no-no, fake tans are so popular too.
Thing is though, even using sunscreen will not always stop the damage that can happen. This is why it is recommended that we wear loose fitting tops, skirts/trousers - preferably cotton - and also it is important to wear a large wide brimmed hat when out in the sun. This is as well as using sunscreen.
More than half of lupus patients will be sensitive to the sun. The thing is sunlight can cause pre-existing skin rashes to worsen, actual burning of the skin and also increased activity of lupus in other organs within the body. It is not clear why some lupus sufferers are sensitive to the sun and not others. It can develop at any point throughout the course of the illness.
It is so hard I know to not have a tan when others around look so good with theirs. I personally have never had one in my life, but I think of myself as pale and interesting - but safe hee hee !!
Post Edited By Moderator (Lynnwood) : 5/1/2007 8:57:55 AM (GMT-6)
Some lupus patients are apparently eligible for free sunscreen or cheaper pricing because of their medical need. May be worth looking into.
I have personally have never asked because I hardly ever go outdoors anyway, so a tube of high factor sunscreen lasts me for ages.
Do you have local chapters of lupus foundation near you ? If you are not sure, then contact www.lupuscanada.org they have so much information on their web site.
If you cannot get what you need from this site, then why not ask your pharmacist you normally use to get your medications ? He/she should have a rough idea of who qualifies and who doesn't.
If not, then yes I would try asking your rheumy, especially if you do have skin involvement with your lupus.
Hope this helps. (Ooops don't know what happened to the colour hee hee) !!
You are most welcome.
What happens in the UK is that if the doctor thinks that you need to use a certain sunscreen because of your lupus skin condition, then he will prescribe it for you. This will work out much cheaper than going to the pharmacy and buying it OTC.
If you don't pay for prescription meds, then of course you will get it for free. Only if the doctor thinks it is necessasry for your particuar condition though.
Worth asking about I think.