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Staying Healthy

Is your sunscreen safe?

August 01, 2019

Although some sun-blocking chemicals may enter the body, there's no reason yet to change sunscreen practices.

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Some common sunscreen ingredients are under new scrutiny. In May, researchers announced results of a study finding that some of these commonly used chemicals are absorbed into the body in higher amounts than previously known. The FDA now plans to investigate whether these common ingredients are still safe at these higher levels.

"This study reminds us that even products we put on our skin have the potential to be absorbed throughout the body," says Dr. Jennifer Lin, an assistant professor of dermatology at Harvard Medical School and co-director of the Melanoma Risk and Prevention Clinic at Brigham and Women's Hospital. Even so, the study didn't find that these chemicals are harmful or that sunscreen is unsafe.

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