Skip Navigation

You and Your Genes

muscular man with sunburn saying 'ouch'Big, muscular people look as if they can resist anything. But they can have allergies or asthma, or be injured by chemicals, too. And the bigger they come, the more skin the sun can burn!

Most of us, for example, can get sunburned on a bright day. Your reaction will be greater if you are outside, without much on, for a long time. Your reaction will be less if you cover your exposed skin with lots of sun screen. How badly you burn can depend on your age and previous exposure. (Babies and toddlers need a lot more protection.) Finally, if one or both of your parents burn very easily, they may have passed that sensitivity to you in your genes.

For more information about sun safety, download the Sunwise Activity Book , the Sunwise Storybook , and all the other Sunwise School publications created by the Environmental Protection Agency  to promote sun-safe behavior at any age.