UV Safety Awareness: Save Your Skin
July is UV Safety Awareness Month and a great time to re-evaluate how we protect our skin!
There is nothing most people look forward to more than a nice sunny day. Summer is for enjoying those sunny days and spending time outside—swimming, biking, golfing, sharing family picnics, spending a day at the park with the kids…the list goes on and on. The sun is important, and a valuable source of vitamin d, but let’s face it, too much of a good thing is not always a good thing.
Ultraviolet (UV) radiation comes primarily from the sun but also from man-made sources like tanning beds and welding torches. According to the American Cancer Society, UV Radiation is the leading contributor to most skin cancers, and skincancer.org estimates that 1 in 5 Americans will develop skin cancer by the age of 70 with roughly 90 percent of non-melanoma skin cancers linked to UV radiation from the sun. UV damage to the skin can appear in other ways, too. Sunburn, wrinkles, dark spots and premature aging are all signs of too much exposure.
Facts and Risks
– The sun can still be damaging when it’s cloudy and during the winter.
– UV is strongest between the hours of 10 a.m. and 4 p.m. when the sun is at its peak.
– UV radiation becomes even stronger when near reflective surfaces like water, sand and snow and at higher altitudes.
– Some medications may increase your risk of sunburn, thereby increasing the risk of damaging effects.
Easy Ways to Protect
Never fear, it’s absolutely possible to enjoy the sun we love and also protect ourselves from the harmful effects of spending too much time exposed to it.
– Wear hats with a wide brim to shade your face and neck.
– Wear sunglasses to protect your eyes, also susceptible to UV damage.
– Use sunscreen, at least SPF 15, and one that protects against both UV-A and UV-B.
– Apply sunscreen generously to all exposed skin at least once every 2 hours; re-apply after sweating or swimming.
– Wear protective clothing.
– Sit in the shade.
– Limit time spent in the sun.
– Know what to look for with monthly skin checks and yearly dermatology check-ups.
By Traci Tucker, LNHA
If you are caring for a loved one and need some assistance and guidance, a Cariloop Healthcare Coach would love to walk you and your family through whatever you may be dealing with. Become a member or call 1-844-790-5667 to get started.
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