News Release

June 1, 2007

Contact: Christopher DeFrancesco, 860-679-3914

What’s What When It Comes to Sunscreen?

UConn Health Center Dermatology Chief Offers Advice

FARMINGTON, CONN. – It’s time to start thinking about all things summer – including how to protect yourself and your family from the damaging effects of the sun’s ultraviolet rays.

Reminders to use sunscreen are nothing new; but how much protection are you really getting if you’re using the wrong kind or not applying it properly?

“Some simple steps today can help you avoid some major health problems tomorrow,” says Jane Grant-Kels, M.D., chairperson of the University of Connecticut Health Center’s Department of Dermatology. “For instance, is the sun block you’re using appropriate for that day’s exposure? How long will it work? Are you re-applying frequently enough? Do higher SPF ratings give a false sense of security?”

Some common myths about sunscreen include:

  • A single application of sun block in the morning makes it safe to lie in the sun all day.
  • Products with the highest available SPF rating offer complete protection from all ultraviolet rays.
  • Sun burn is only a risk on bright, sunny days.

Dr. Grant-Kels is available for interviews on this subject. She also is a professor and researcher at the UConn Health Center. Skin cancer is among her areas of expertise.

UConn Health includes the schools of medicine and dental medicine, the UConn Medical Group, University Dentists, and John Dempsey Hospital. Home to Bioscience Connecticut, UConn Health pursues a mission of providing outstanding health care education in an environment of exemplary patient care, research and public service. More information about UConn Health is available at

Note: News professionals are invited to visit the UConn Health Today news page ( for regularly updated news and feature stories, photos and media stories. News releases are archived at UConn Health news and information is also available on Facebook, Twitter and YouTube.