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  • Writer's pictureWilson Bunton

Countdown to Summer With 10 Sun Safety Tips

Did you know that daily use of SPF 15 can reduce your risk of melanoma by 50 percent? Think of all of the times you’re potentially exposed to the sun throughout your day - your drive to work, walking the dog, or even just walking to the mailbox. With summer just around the corner, it’s more important than ever to practice skin protection habits. Use these sun safety tips to help keep your skin protected from the sun.

10. Protect Yourself When UV Rays Are The Strongest The most important times to keep your skin protected are between 10 a.m. and 4 p.m. when UV rays are strongest. We recommend protecting your skin during these times especially in the springtime and throughout the summer. These seasons are when UV rays are the most intense.

9. Keep Your Skin Covered Wear long-sleeved shirts and long pants when practical to provide skin protection from UV rays. Dark and bright colors tend to absorb the sun, providing better protection than lighter colors. You can even find fabrics that are specifically designed to protect you from the sun. Look for UPF values of 30+ for the best protection.

8. Wear Protective Hats Much like protective clothing, accessories like hats provide shade to your face, ears and the back of your neck. Look for wide brimmed (4-inches) to get the best protection. Seek out dark-colored and tightly-woven fabrics. For best results, look for hats with UPF values of 30+.

7. Protect Your Eyes From UV Rays Keep your sunglasses on to protect your eyes from UV rays and reduce your risk of cataracts. When purchasing sunglasses, look for a pair that blocks UVA and UVB rays for the most complete protection.

6. Seek Shade When Possible Spend outdoor time in the shade to protect your skin from direct sunlight. However, shade doesn’t make you invisible to the sun so remember to still wear protective clothing and sunscreen.

5. Stay Hydrated Prolonged exposure to the sun without drinking enough water can lead to serious health conditions such as heat stroke and dehydration. Be sure to hydrate with water or beverages containing electrolytes. We recommend avoiding alcohol or caffeinated beverages when in the sun.

4. Check Your Medications For Sun Sensitivity Some medications can increase sun sensitivity. Check with your pharmacist to see if this is a side effect of your medication before sun exposure. If photosensitivity is a side effect, these sun safety tips will be even more important to follow.

3. Choose Sunscreen With SPF 15 or Higher There are so many different types of sunscreens on the market that it can be difficult to know which one is best for your skin. First, consider how long your sun exposure is and choose a SPF to match. The number associated with the SPF is how many minutes you should be protected from the sun’s UVB rays, preventing burning. Apply about 30 minutes before exposure so it has time to work effectively.

2. Reapply Sunscreen Applying sunscreen once won’t protect you all day, especially when spending multiple hours outdoors and being active. Be sure to reapply every two hours when outdoors and immediately after swimming or sweating. Waterproof sunscreen can help protect your skin more effectively with these activities.

1. Be Generous With Sunscreen Your skin is the largest organ in the body and has many important jobs. Give it the protection it needs. Use approximately one ounce of sunscreen on your entire body. Use this same amount when reapplying every two hours. We hope these sun safety tips help you have an enjoyable summer in the sun without the sunburns and skin damage.

Looking to purchase sunscreen, aloe vera gel, or sunglasses to prepare for some fun in the sun? Shop at Shaffer Pharmacy today.

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