A new study has shown that sunscreen enters the bloodstream and remains there for at least 24 hours after just one application, the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) says.
Be sure to read below for advice on using sunscreen after this FDA finding and how to protect yourself against sun exposure.
A new study published this week in the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA) conducted by FDA researchers found the amount of four chemical sunscreen ingredients: avobenzone, ecamsule, octocrylene, and oxybenzone, remain within the bloodstream at levels the FDA says triggers the need for more testing and raises concerns, as some of these chemicals are being absorbed through the skin at higher levels than previously believed.
The testing showed that the FDA safety threshold for oxybenzone in the bloodstream was exceeded in only two hours. And with the continued usage of sunscreen over four days, the concentration of sunscreen-derived chemicals in the blood continued to rise.
It’s not news that chemicals applied topically enter the bloodstream. There are many medications that are administered this way.
However, what is concerning news is a new medical report revealing that the chemicals in sunscreen, after just one application, remains in the body 24 hours later, and the amount of these chemicals still present within the bloodstream far exceeds the FDA’s recommended threshold without a government safety inspection.
The FDA wants to know more about certain chemicals contained in sunscreens. Earlier this year, the FDA requested that sunscreen manufacturers provide them with more information on 12 chemicals in particular.
At this point, medical professionals say no. These experts advise that people continue to use sunscreen against the greater risk of skin damage and skin cancer. It is not yet known if the absorption of compounds from sunscreen in the blood is harmful.
Instead, some professionals are advising that people choose sunscreens that have mineral active ingredients such as zinc oxide and combine this practice with other son safety measures, which includes avoiding overexposure.
Keep in mind, many natural, mineral-based products have a lower SPF rating, which means they may need to be reapplied more frequently or one should reduce their exposure to the sun during the peak hours of 10 AM to 4 PM. Protective clothing and a hat are also recommended.