As the summer months approach, most of us will begin to spend more time outdoors and soak up the sun. While the sun offers a great source of Vitamin D, it is important to be aware of the harmful effects of prolonged exposure to ultraviolet rays (UV) and ways we can protect ourselves. Make sure you keep these precautions in mind for sun safety as we head into the sunny season!
When we think of sun protection, our minds typically think of sunscreen. However, your skin isn’t the only thing you need to protect, your eyes also need to be taken care of. Find yourself a pair of sunglasses that block both UVA and UVB radiation, a fashion accessory that is also practical! If you are a glasses wearer, consider a pair of prescription sunglasses for outdoor use or there is also the option of transition lenses. These lenses will darken in the presence of UV rays and provide protection without you having to change frames.
If you’ll be out in the sun for a long period of time with limited shade, try finding some lightweight clothing to cover yourself from the rays. Loose shirts and pants can keep you protected while not being too heavy. Certain brands even offer clothing in material specifically designed to block UV rays. For headwear, try and wear a cap or wide brimmed hat when possible to keep the sun off your face. Another chance to elevate your outfit while still protecting your skin!
Being out in the sun can cause the body to lose fluids and become dehydrated. Severe side effects can come with dehydration; dizziness, headaches and muscle cramps are just a few examples. To avoid any of this, it is important you stay hydrated in the heat even if you don’t feel thirsty. Keep a water bottle around and drink frequently to make sure you are getting enough fluids.
Applying sunscreen regularly is something we should all be aware of. By using sunscreen, you are protecting your skin from sunburn, premature aging and wrinkles, and reducing the risk for skin cancer. Look for a sunscreen with an SPF of 30 or greater, and it is important to reapply frequently, especially after swimming or sweating. If you will be spending time in the water, try and choose a water resistant product to improve your coverage. Sunscreen can come in many forms, you can choose a cream, spray or stick (a fairly new type which looks similar to a deodorant). Make sure that whichever form you choose, your application is thorough to avoid
missing any areas that are exposed to the sun. For everyday use, consider choosing a face moisturizer with SPF for extra protection while you’re out and about. Stay safe in the sun and your future self will appreciate the care you are taking for your skin.
There is nothing better than spending time outside in the sun. Whether you’re laying out on the beach or spending time at the park, we all want to feel the warmth in the spring and summer months. So continue to have your fun and protect yourself from the sun!