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7 essential tips for sun protection

| Healthy You | Wellness | Safety

Woman applying sunscreen to young child.

Protecting your skin and eyes from the sun is important year round.

With a little preparation, all of us can try to have a sunburn-free spring and summer season. Did you know that everyone should be wearing sunscreen? And that you should wear sunglasses, even on slightly cloudy days?

  1. Sunscreen for all. Look for one with an SPF of 30 or higher. You’ll want to apply it even on cloudy days and more often when in and out of the water or while sweating. Don’t forget the top of your head and ears.
  2. Protect your lips. Use a lip product with SPF of 30 or higher included and avoid petroleum jelly type products that may increase the chance of burning your lips.
  3. Wear sunglasses with a UV protection label. Also look for ones that are larger to protect more of your eyes. Over time, UV rays may cause eye problems, including cataracts, a clouding of the eye’s lens that can blur vision, or eyelid cancer.
  4. Wear a wide-brimmed hat. Not all hats are created equal when it comes to protecting you from the sun. A baseball cap doesn’t cover as much of your face as you may think. And a visor leaves the top of your head exposed. Instead, choose a wide-brimmed hat that has UV protection built into the fabric or material.
  5. Stay indoors or in the shade during peak sun hours. The peak hours of sunlight when the sun can be the most damaging may vary depending on where you live, but often it’s between 10 a.m. and 4 p.m.
  6. Wear clothing with sun protection built in. Choose darker clothing that helps absorb UV rays. Dark clothing will make you warmer so try to stay in the shade. Some clothing has a sun protection factor fabric that doesn’t wash out.
  7. Get checked. Schedule your annual skin check at your dermatologist to have them do a once-over on your skin. You can also do a self-check at home by knowing your ABCDEs.