Wear protective clothing and gear
If you know you’re going to be spending time in the sun, there are some things you can take along to protect your skin and eyes: Sun Protection Factor (SPF) 30 or above, a shirt, hat and sunglasses.
Self Exam
The best way to catch cancer before it catches you is to discover it early. Take advantage of the fact that your skin is the most visible organ of the body and check it regularly. Any irregular shaped spots or sores that don’t seem to heal may require some attention.
Follow up
If you have had skin cancer or precancerous lesions in the past you need to take special care and visit a dermatologist regularly.
Limit Outdoor Activity from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.
Try to avoid unnecessary exposure when the sun’s rays are at their strongest. Even on cloudy or cooler days, ultraviolet (UV) rays remain strong. Shady spots can be just as tricky because of reflected light. When outdoors during these hours, make sure to apply sufficient SPF 30 sunscreen before stepping outside and repeatedly throughout the day. See below!
Apply Sunscreen Properly
Generously apply sunscreen 30 minutes before going out in the sun. Choose a sunscreen with SPF 30 or greater. Don’t forget nose, ears, hands, feet, shoulders and behind the neck. Lips can also burn, so apply lip balm with SPF protection. Reapply sunscreen every two to three hours and after sweating or swimming.
Cover Up!
Wearing sun protective clothing and hats is one of the most important ways of warding off UV damage. When wet, light-colored clothing transmits just as much sunlight as bare skin, so keep covered with dark colors, long sleeves and pants whenever possible. And don’t forget the accessories: sunglasses with UV protection to guard against cornea damage, and hats to prevent sunburned scalps and faces. At the beach, bring along a large umbrella.
Be Mindful of Medications
Some medications increase the skin’s sensitivity to the sun, so make sure to ask your doctor or check the label on any prescriptions. Prescribed antibiotics and acne medications are the most notorious culprits, but don’t be afraid to ask, particularly if you are going on a long summer holiday or know you may have extended sun exposure.
Set a Good Example for Your Kids
If your child sees you following sun safety rules, he or she will take them for granted and follow suit. Skin protection is important for every member of the family and children are in more danger than any other group when in the sun. Team up with your children and stay protected when venturing out. Scented and colorful sunscreens appeal to some kids and make it easier to see which areas have been covered well. Protective clothing, hats with brims and sunglasses are just as important for kids and babies too. Our little ones are special but require some special attention to when it comes to sun-safe fun.