While summer means fun in the sun, make sure you’re not getting too much of a good thing. The hours between 10 a.m. and 4 p.m. are the most hazardous for UV exposure. The CDC recommends easy options for sun protection:
- Use sunscreen with sun protective factor (SPF) 15 or higher, and both UVA and UVB protection
- Sunscreen wears off. Put it on again if you stay out in the sun for more than two hours and after you swim or do things that make you sweat.
- Check the sunscreen’s expiration date. Sunscreen without an expiration date has a shelf life of no more than three years, but its shelf life is shorter if it has been exposed to high temperatures.
- Wear clothing to protect exposed skin.
- Loose fitting long sleeved shirts and long pants made from tightly woven fabric offer the best protection from the sun’s UV rays. A wet t-shirt offers much less UV protection than a dry one. Darker colors may offer more protection than lighter colors.
- Wear a hat with a wide brim to shade the face, head, ears and neck.
- Sunglasses protect your eyes form UV rays and reduce the risk of cataracts. They also protect the tender skin around your eyes form sun exposure. Wear sunglasses that wrap around and block as close to 100% of both UVA and UVB rays as possible.
- Stay hydrated. Drink plenty of water. It’s best to avoid alcohol and caffeine all together when you’re spending a day in the sun, but if you drink alcoholic beverages balance it with one glass of water with each beverage.