Sun Safety Tips

Sun exposure is necessary because it is the primary source of Vitamin D which helps our bodies absorb calcium.  The amount of vitamin D that a person requires can be achieved by spending minimal time in the sun.  Unprotected and repeated sun exposure can lead to skin damage, eye damage, weakened immune system and also skin cancer.  Due to the dangers of exposure to the sun’s ultraviolet (UV) rays, it is very important to practice sun safety.

Here are some helpful sun safety tips that you can put into practice as part of your daily routine:

Avoid the rays of the sun when they are strongest
From 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., the sun is at its hottest and therefore it is crucial to stay out of the sun during these hours and seek shaded areas.

Always wear sunscreen
Apply sunscreen that has SPF of 30 or higher.  Even when cloudy or cool, it is still important to wear sunscreen to protect the skin from sunburn which is still possible on these days.  UV rays can travel through clouds and reflect off sand, water or concrete which can be just as harmful as the hot sun.  Kids especially love the outdoors, and for this reason, they burn easily.  They should wear sunscreen at all times.  It should be noted that babies under six months old should not wear sunscreen but they should be kept out of the sun as much as possible.  When selecting a sunscreen, make sure it states that it protects against both UVA and UVB rays.  Sunscreen must be applied 15 to 30 minutes before going into the sun to create a good barrier. Also, reapply every two hours even after swimming.  People with bald spots or thinning hair need to apply sunscreen to the scalp as well.

Wear protective clothing
Covering up the skin is an effective way of protecting it from harmful UV rays. A good sun safety tip is to wear long sleeved clothing and long pants which are ideal for this situation.

Protect the eyes
Sun exposure damages the eyes too.  Wear wide-rimmed hats to provide shade for the face along with sunglasses to protect the eyes from harmful UV rays.  Look for sunglasses that state on their labels ?100% UV protection?.  Use an umbrella when going about in the sun.

Provide shade for outdoor activities
For activities that call for long periods outdoors, provide shade by setting up tents or large umbrellas.

Explore tanning options
Instead of staying in the sun to get a tan, opt for self tanning lotions.  They provide a beautiful tan appearance without the sun exposure.

Avoid tanning beds
It is important to observe sun safety tips as a means of protecting the skin from the sun’s harmful UV rays.  It is also very important to practice sun safety on children since they tend to burn more easily with more sensitive.  Research has found that the majority of sun damage is done before age 18.

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