How to Enjoy the Sun Safely this Summer
The summer sun can feel amazing; the warmth and the chance of building a light tan is unmissable. You can spend time with friends and family, perhaps going on a beach holiday or just staying at home and making the most of your garden.
However, it’s important to enjoy the sun safely and make sure you avoid any harmful effects of the UV rays. There are a number of different skin cancers and other conditions that can be caused by too much sun exposure, so it’s important to be aware of how to stay safe.
Here are some tips on how to enjoy the sun safely this summer:
Wearing loose, light clothing is the best way to stay cool while also shielding your skin from the sun. Long-sleeved shirts, hats and sunglasses will all help to protect you. This is essential if you are fair skinned or have a history of skin cancer.
If you get too warm, and need to take off a layer, please make sure you have shade available for you. Being in the shade will also help to keep you cooler.
Make sure you apply sunscreen with an SPF of at least 30 to all exposed skin. Reapply it every two hours, or more often if you are sweating or swimming. Water-resistant sunscreen is ideal for swimming.
If you have children, it can be difficult to keep them protected with sunscreen. You should try to apply it for them before they go outside as well as every couple of hours, more so if they are in and out of water.
The sun is at its strongest between 11am and 3pm, so try to stay out of direct sunlight during these hours. If you are outside during these times, seek out shade under trees, umbrellas or canopies.
Take extra care with babies and young children as their skin is much more delicate. They should also wear a hat and sunglasses and be kept in the shade as much as possible.
Drink plenty of fluids
It’s important to stay hydrated in the summer heat, so make sure you drink plenty of water and avoid alcohol. If you are sweating a lot, you may need to replace lost electrolytes by drinking sports drinks or fruit juices.
Be aware of the symptoms of heat exhaustion and heat stroke, which can occur if you become dehydrated. Symptoms include headache, dizziness, nausea and vomiting. If you experience any of these, move to a cooler location and drink lots of fluids. If the symptoms don’t improve, seek medical attention.
Monitor your medication
Some medications can make you more sensitive to the sun, so it’s important to check the side effects before spending time outside. If you are taking medication for conditions such as acne, eczema or psoriasis, make sure you speak to your doctor about how to stay safe in the sun.
Have sunglasses at the ready
Sunglasses aren’t just a fashion statement – they protect your eyes from the sun’s harmful UV rays. The different styles you can find means you will be able to choose the best sunglasses to fit your face shape and overall look.
You can even find clip on sunglasses to go over your regular glasses, which can be a handy attachment if you don’t want to carry a separate pair.
If you wear contact lenses, make sure they have UV protection.
Be aware of the signs of sunburn
Sunburn can happen very quickly, so it’s important to be aware of the signs. These include red, sore and tender skin, as well as peeling skin a few days later. If you experience any of these, get out of the sun and apply cool compresses to the affected area.
If you have severe sunburn, with blistering skin, you should seek medical attention.
Check your skin regularly
It’s a good idea to check your skin regularly for any changes, such as new moles or moles that have changed in size, shape or colour. If you notice anything unusual, make an appointment to see your doctor.
Following these tips will help you to enjoy the sun safely this summer. Covering up, applying sunscreen and seeking shade will all help to protect you from the harmful effects of the sun. Remember to stay hydrated and be aware of the signs of sunburn. Checking your skin regularly will also help to identify any changes that may be of concern.