Today marks the official first day of summer, a time typically filled with lots of outdoor activities including swimming, going to the beach, backyard barbeques, and more.
It’s not always fun and games in these months though, as some health concerns arise this time of year. WebMD has compiled a list of the seven most common summer health hazards. Sunburns are fourth on the list.
As you can see from the UV Index Chart from Sun Safety Alliance, under the highest UV rays, sunburns can occur with as little as 10 minutes or less of sun exposure, without sunscreen.
In the short-term, sunburns can cause redness, blisters, and pain, but can be easily remedied with application of aloe vera. However, the long-term repercussions can be devastating to your health.
According to Skincancer.org, your risk of developing melanoma doubles if you have had even five sunburns over your entire life. This makes it imperative to avoid getting burned while out in the summer sun.
Here are some tips to prevent sunburns:
Always wear sunscreen: The sunscreen should be 15 SPF or higher (the higher the better) and protect against both UVB and UVA rays. Don’t forget to reapply sunscreen when outdoors and at the pool or beach every two hours!
Stay in the shade: When possible, avoid sun contact by remaining in the shade, especially in the strongest sun of the day between the hours of 10 a.m. and 4 p.m.
Cover up: In addition to wearing sunscreen, limit the amount of skin exposed to the sun. Also consider wearing a hat and sunglasses.
Self-Examinations: Always check your body once a month for suspicious looking moles or blemishes. Consult your physician if you discover anything out of the ordinary.
Annual Exams: Consult your doctor for an annual skin exam.
Enjoy the summer and always remember to practice safe sun!