Summer is finally in full swing, which means it’s time to get outside and enjoy all your favorite summertime activities. However, there’s one thing that makes this season a bit more risky to your health than you might initially think: the sun. Summer sun can cause sunburn and other skin problems that over time can develop into serious health issues. Current estimates are that one in five Americans will develop skin cancer in their lifetime, partially due to sun exposure. Here are a few tips and tricks you can use to keep yourself safe from the summer sun while still enjoying all your favorite activities.
Dress For Success
Most people default to t-shirts and shorts as their preferred summertime wear, and it’s easy to understand why. In fact, t-shirts had been worn for over two decades before the word was officially added to the Merriam-Webster dictionary, making them a 117-year-old garment. However, these wardrobe staples aren’t always the right choice for your summer sun protection. Depending on your outdoor activity of choice, you’ll want to pick out different gear to keep you safe from the sun while also enjoying your hobby. For example, fishermen should keep waders in their closet to stay prepared for their hobby. The average life span of fishing waders with moderate wear and care could be up to 3 years.
Reapply Sunscreen Regularly
When you’re out and about enjoying your summertime hobbies, you might forget that sunscreen can wear off over the course of a day. This is particularly true for summertime hobbies that take place out on the water, like boating. More than 87 million U.S. adults participate in recreational boating, and when you’re out on the water, the moist conditions can wash off your sunscreen faster than usual. Be sure to reapply your sunscreen at regular intervals throughout the day, particular for longer days outdoors. This will keep you protected from the sun for longer periods of time.
Stick To The Shade
Whenever possible while you’re outside, stick to shaded areas that are out of the way of direct sunlight. Not all hobbies and activities necessarily make this easy, so try to schedule your day so you plan for a few breaks. Most importantly, try to stay out of direct sunlight during the late morning and early afternoon – this is when sunlight is most direct and most likely to cause harm. Most professionals suggest avoiding direct sunlight between the hours of 10:00 AM and 2:00 PM.
Learn Your Limits
Not everyone can handle the same amount of summer sun and heat when they’re outside. A variety of factors may make people more vulnerable to issues involving sun and heat exposure, including age and medication. If you’re currently taking a new medication, be sure to check with your doctor to see if you need to worry about how much time you’re spending out in the sun. Likewise, when you’re outdoors with your family, keep track of how long your kids are spending out in the sun – they’ll likely burn faster than you will.
While getting outdoors during the summer can be fun, it’s important to stay protected and safe from heat exhaustion and sun exposure. Even if you live in a place like Tampa and want to take advantage of the 246 full days of sun every year, make sure you’re staying safe. Keep these tips in mind before you head out for the day so you can stay safe and healthy this summer.