Sun Safety Reminders
If you’ve been outside this summer, then you most likely know that it is HOT! However, despite the undeniable heat, we often forget to take the necessary precautions to protect ourselves and our families when we head out for a cookout or fun filled weekend. By taking the time to consider the fast and easy-to-follow sun safety tips, you can help reduce painful sun burns and dangerous heat exposure.
Tip 1: Choosing a Sunscreen
You may think that choosing a sunscreen consists of grabbing whatever is available; however, that is not the case. Choosing a sunscreen can require a bit of thought and consideration, and it is a critical part of sun safety.
The American Academy of Dermatology recommends a sunscreen that offers broad-spectrum protection against UVA and UVB rays, is SPF 30 or higher, and is water resistant. So when you’re out at the store looking for things to buy for that trip out, remember to pick up a sunscreen that meets these recommendation – not just the first bottle of sunscreen you see.
Tip 2: Sunscreen Safety
I know what you’re thinking, “do you really need safety tips to apply a little bit of sunscreen?” In truth, yes you do.
Before you apply that same sunscreen that you used last summer – and probably the summer before that – be sure to check the expiration date. Sunscreen can lose its effectiveness after three years. Also, remember to put the sunscreen on before you get dressed as shorts and sleeves can ride up, exposing unprotected skin.
Tip 3: Dress Well
Dress coolly and casually. Synthetic fibers (like polyester or lycra) are more protective than cotton or linen. Also, darker colors hold heat more than lighter colors. Your best bet is clothing specifically designed to shield you from the sun, like fabrics with built-in UPF protection.
Tip 4: Don’t Forget Your Scalp
A hat is your best bet for protection, but if you don’t feel like wearing a hat, there are plenty of spray-on sunscreens designed for the head that won’t leave your hair a greasy white mess.
Tip 5: Sunglasses
Buy your sunglasses from a trusted source. Don’t buy cheap sunglasses from an untrusted source and expect them to protect your eyes.
Ask your eye doctor about it if you’re unsure about what kind of sunglasses to get.
Tip 6: Pick the Right Time To Be Outside
Try to limit the amount of time you spend in direct sun light between 10:00 am and 4:00 pm, that is when the sun is shining the strongest. This means to move your beach chair in a shady spot or head inside during you lunch break if you work outside.
There are now cool stickers and bracelets that can monitor your level of exposure and alert you when it’s time to take a break.
Tip 7: Using Shelter
When you have spend your entire day outside, try to use umbrellas, sun protective parasols, and tents to help you beat the sun the right way.
Tip 8: Checking Your Skin Regularly
Make sure to check your skin regularly for changes, which can be early indications of skin cancer. The good news is that if caught and treated early, most skin cancer is curable. The Skin Cancer Foundation recommends that you perform a self-check of your skin once a month, keeping an eye out for warning signs.