The great outdoors are more important than ever. We need the fresh air, the Vitamin D, the exercise, and the togetherness. The sun is certainly not something to fear or shun! But it needs to be understood, respected and protected against for the sake of your skin. Excessive sun can cause sunburns, and it is the leading cause of skin cancer. Even if you never get a sunburn or skin cancer, sun damage can prematurely age your skin, making you look older than you are.
So how can you still enjoy the beach, lake, park or just being outside and stay sun safe? Here are seven easy ways to still have fun this summer – brought to you by Harpeth Valley Dermatology.
Wear broad spectrum sunscreen of at least SPF 30 every single day, even if it’s cloudy or cold. This is one of the best defenses of exposed skin against UV rays.
Sunscreen is not a one-and-done for the day. You’ll need to reapply at least every 2 hours, more often if you are sweating or swimming.
Sunglasses not only protect your eyes and help you see without squinting, they also protect the delicate skin around your eyes, a common early site of wrinkles and other signs of aging.
Wear a Hat
Hats are great choices for additional protection on the exposed skin around the face, neck and ears. Wide brimmed hats made of a tightly woven fabric provide the highest level of protection.
If you can find shade under a tree, awning or umbrella, take it. Not only will you cool off a bit, you’ll be less exposed to harmful rays.
Avoid the Strongest Rays
The hottest part of the day (11 am – 3 pm) is also the time of day when the sun’s rays are the strongest. Sounds like a perfect time for a siesta or an indoor game. Aim for outdoor time in the early morning or later in the evening for optimal sun safety.
Long sleeve UPF shirts, pants and dresses provide excellent protection. With today’s fabric technology, there are lots of lightweight options. If that’s not realistic, try to cover as much as you can. Even wearing a t-shirt or a swim coverup when you’re on the boat or poolside instead of in the water reduces exposed skin.
Protect Your Skin Health
Annual dermatology appointments can ensure you’re taking care of your skin, including early detection of any changes in your skin. If you have a concern about skin cancer or want to schedule your annual skin check, reach out to Harpeth Valley Dermatology at 615-905-8083 or https://www.harpethvalleydermatology.com/contact.
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