4 Simple Sun Safety Tips

By May 24, 2019May 29th, 2019Well-being
A woman applies sunscreen to her shoulder.

I love nearly everything about the summer — long, sunny days; hot afternoons at the beach; hiking and swimming with my dog; spending time in the garden. But given my fair skin, there’s a risk that comes along with all of my favorite summer activities – sunburn.

Not surprisingly, I’ve had at least three severe sunburns in my life. I was young and didn’t think sunscreen was cool. I wanted to be tan, even though spending time in the sun just made me pink (well, red really). Looking back, I can’t believe I didn’t practice sun safety. Now I know that one severe sunburn in childhood or adolescence more than doubles my chance of developing melanoma, the most serious type of skin cancer.1

So between my previous burns and a family history of skin cancer, I now take sun safety seriously. I use sunscreen every time I’m going to spend time outside in the summer. But sun safety isn’t just for the summer. You can get a serious burn from snow glare or on cloudy days. Therefore, I use lotion with added sunscreen every day.

Here are 4 simple tips from the American Cancer Society on sun safety:

  1. Avoid being outside in the sun between 10 a.m. and 4 p.m. when UV light is the strongest.
  2. Use sunscreen – often and generously. Don’t forget to put sunscreen on your ears, nose, tops of your feet, and back of your neck.
  3. Wear a hat and a beach cover-up. Even with sunscreen, you can still absorb UV light. These added layers of clothing help protect you a little bit more.
  4. Wear sunglasses to protect your eyes from UV light.

While I can’t undo the damage I’ve done to my skin, with the help of a good dermatologist and a liberal amount of sunscreen, I hope to prevent future burns and skin cancer.

1 Skin Cancer Foundation

 

Sarah Matthews

About Sarah Matthews

I’m a senior communications specialist at IBX. I’m passionate about weight loss through fitness and healthy eating. I stay active by walking, running, and going to the gym. I also enjoy hiking with my dog along the Wissahickon trails.

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