As we enter the summer months, we plan for long days doing some of our favorite activities in the sunshine. Before going out for summertime fun in the sun, make sure to protect your skin from the harmful rays. The warmth from the sun feels great, but the UV rays are damaging to our skin. Taking preventive measures can help reduce your risk for skin cancer.
Here are some ways to protect your skin from the sun:
- Stay in the shade whenever you can.
- Wear long-sleeved shirts, pants, or long skirts made of light fabric.
- Wear a sun hat.
- Use a broad-spectrum sunscreen with SPF 15 or higher.
What you need to know about sun safety:
- SPF, Sun Protection Factor, indicates the protection against one type of UV ray from the sun – UVB rays. However, we need to protect ourselves from UVB and UVA rays.
- The best protection comes from sunscreen that absorbs both UVB and UVA rays labeled as “broad spectrum” on sunscreen bottles.
- Follow the directions on the sunscreen bottle. Most need to be applied 15 minutes before sun exposure for the best protection.
- Reapplication of sunscreen every 2 hours is crucial to avoid a sunburn.
- When in the water or sweating, reapply based on the directions on the bottle. Reapplication will most likely be more often than every 2 hours.
- Don’t forget about your lips and wear a lip balm with SPF.
- Your skin can become damaged even on cloudy days. Still apply your sunscreen when outdoors on cloudy days.
- Sunscreen has an expiration date. Check yours before the next time you go outside.
Before going outside this summer, take the necessary steps to protect yourself and your family from the potential risks of getting a sunburn. Find a broad-spectrum sunscreen of at least 15 SPF that is the best fit for your family, and enjoy the sunshine!
Written By: Coach Shelby