Summer has arrived!
Finally, Summer has officially begun! With dryer weather and warmer temperatures, spending family time in the great outdoors is easy. Whether it’s a day at the beach, a camping vacation or simply a picnic in the park, the important thing is to enjoy lots of fresh air together.
Let's talk sun protection.
Adults and children need sun exposure for vitamin D because it helps our body absorb calcium for stronger and healthier bones. However, exposure to the sun also comes with risk. It only takes 15 minutes of unprotected sun exposure to damage our skin, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
That’s why it’s important to ensure your entire family is protected before stepping outside.
To help you and your family make the most of your Summer adventures, we’ve compiled some information for you on the science of sunburns and sun safety tips.
How do sunburns happen?
The sun radiates light to the earth, and part of that light consists of invisible UV rays. When these rays reach the skin, they cause tanning, burning, and other skin damage.
UVA rays cause skin aging and wrinkling and contribute to skin cancer, such as melanoma (the most dangerous form of skin cancer). UVA rays pass easily through the ozone layer, so they make up the majority of our sun exposure.
UVB rays are also dangerous, causing sunburns, cataracts (clouding of the eye lens), and effects on the immune system. They also contribute to skin cancer, and melanoma is thought to be associated with severe UVB sunburns before age 20.
UV rays react with a chemical called melanin that's found in the skin. A sunburn develops when the amount of UV exposure is greater than what can be protected against by the skin's melanin. The risk of damage increases with the amount and intensity of exposure. A tan is itself a sign of skin damage and does not help protect the skin.
Sun Safety Tips
Here are some tips to keep the entire family healthy and happy on those sunny Summer days.
Hats & Sunglasses: Protection always starts from the top! It’s important to always have a hat and good sunglasses on.
Keep hydrated: Water, water and more water. By doing lots of activities under de sun and warm weather, our body loses lots of water and drinking lots of it is the best way to keep hydrated.
Lead by example: We know how hard it can be to get the kids to stop for 5 minutes to apply sunscreen, drink water and follow instructions. That's why we must lead by example. By showing them that mom and dad are also following all the steps for sun safety is a good way to get them to do the same.
UPF protection swimwear: By using UPF protection clothing on young children, you protect the covered portion of their skin from UVA and UVB rays, which means you can apply less sunscreen to their sensitive skin.
Look for a shady spot: During certain times of the day, the sun’s rays are much stronger so look for an area with shade. It’s especially important to keep babies and toddlers out of the strongest heat of the day. A shady spot is perfect for taking time out to rehydrate and have a bite or a nap. It’s a relaxing way for everyone to enjoy cooler temperatures and chill for a bit.
Summer is a great season to spend family time outside but remember to keep everyone safe and protected. Then you can focus on creating wonderful summer memories!
Images: Stonz Wear / Unsplash
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