Summertime is here and many of us will be spending much of our free time outdoors enjoying the beautiful weather. July was designated by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services as UV Safety Awareness Month to bring attention to the harmful effects the sun can have on our bodies when it’s not properly protected.
The sun gives off two types of radiation:
- UV-A which has a longer wavelength and can damage the outer and middle layer of skin
- UV-B which has a shorter wavelength and primarily damages the outer layer of skin.
Too much exposure to the sun’s radiation can lead to serious health complications, such as:
- Vision problems
- Immune system suppression
- Premature aging of the skin
- Skin cancer
If you are spending time in the sun, following these guidelines can help to prevent any unwanted complications:
- Always cover up your body as best as possible when prolonged exposure to the sun is anticipated. Loose and cool clothing is recommended.
- Apply sunscreen with SPF if you are going to be outdoors. Wearing sunscreen is vital when exposed to the sun, as this helps to protect your skin from harmful UV rays. Make sure to use a sunscreen with a broad spectrum (UVA and UVB) and re-apply throughout the day.
- When possible, try to avoid being out in direct sunlight, especially when the sun is at its most intense which is usually between 10 AM and 4 PM.
- Wear sunglasses to help protect the eyes from the sun’s rays.
Practicing these safety precautions will allow you to enjoy the beautiful summer weather while protecting yourself from the sun’s harmful rays.
All content of this newsletter is intended for general information purposes only and is not intended or implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Please consult a medical professional before adopting any of the suggestions on this page. You must never disregard professional medical advice or delay seeking medical treatment based upon any content of this newsletter. PROMPTLY CONSULT YOUR PHYSICIAN OR CALL 911 IF YOU BELIEVE YOU HAVE A MEDICAL EMERGENCY.