Spending the entire day in the direct sunlight seems like a good idea until you get home, look in the mirror and realize that your skin resembles that of an overripe tomato. Nursing your sunburned skin back to health is a painful journey that requires copious amounts of aloe vera jelly.
Practising safe sun is imperative as prolonged unprotected exposure can lead to skin and eye damage, heat stroke and other unpleasant ailments. iMD Health wants to help Canadians stay safe in the summer heat by providing online resources that can educate the public on sun protection.
This year, avoid getting a dreaded sunburn, heat exhaustion or even dehydration by following these five sun safety tips.
Be diligent with sunscreen
The sun’s rays are strongest from 11 am to 3 pm, so if you’re unable to take shelter in the shade between these hours, be sure that you’re reapplying sunscreen frequently. To avoid burning, use a sunscreen with an SPF of at least 30 and reapply after sweating or swimming.
Wear clothing that covers as much skin as possible
When you aren’t jumping in and out of the pool, try to cover most of your skin with clothing to limit sun exposure. Wearing breathable clothing will keep you cool but very little light should be able to penetrate the fabric – you can test this by holding the garment up to the sun. Denim pants and a jean jacket will protect your sensitive skin from getting a blistering burn.
Invest in a fashionable wide-brimmed hat
Bucket hats have confidently made a comeback this season so you can be trendy and sun-safe at the exact same time. A wide-brimmed hat will shade your face, ears, head and back of your neck from the sun’s strong UVA and UVB rays. Repeatedly spending too much time unprotected in the direct sun can cause damage that could later cause coarse wrinkles and skin cancers.
Always wear sunglasses
We rely on our eyes to see the world around us, which is why we need to protect them at all costs. According to iMD Health, you should look for sunglasses or prescription lenses with full UVA and UVB protection. These sunglasses will have labels that say “UV400” or “100% UV protection.” By not wearing protective sunglasses, you could experience a retinal burn that may lead to vision loss.
Drink lots of water
It’s important to replenish the fluids lost from perspiration while spending time outdoors. Always opt for a chilled glass of water instead of an alcoholic beverage or sugary soft drink. Neglecting your water intake while in the sun can lead to dehydration, which will make you feel dizzy and extremely fatigued. In order to stay healthy and hydrated, one should be drinking eight to 10 glasses of water on a daily basis, especially on extra warm days.
Visit iMD Health’s Sun Protection page for more tips on how to protect yourself and your family members (both children and adults) from the sun.
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