The “Queen of the Seasons” is here after a dreadful winter and it is all about icy cold drinks, fruits and flowers, picnics in the park with family and friends, sunbathing, open toed shoes, floral dresses and so much more! In short, spring brings with it colors, fragrance and joy.
We realize that all of us have been deprived of the sun all winter and are yearning to let our bodies breathe by soaking up the sun, but many of us are so overwhelmed that we forget or ignore the importance of protecting our bodies from the dangers of even just a little bit of sun. We’ve all heard the horrors of what too much sun exposure can do to our skin. You know, the wrinkles, the freckles, the sunspots, sunburn and three types of skin cancer. True, the Vitamin D dose the sun provides is irreplaceable. Oh, and also the anti-cancer effect. If you are trying to digest all this conflicting information and your head is spinning, you aren’t alone. What is a girl (or guy) to do? You cannot really take all what’s good for you and somehow dodge what’s bad. What you can do, however, is to wear protection. Not that hard a thing to do now, is it? To protect yourself from the dangerous effects of UV rays both short term like a sunburn, freckles or long term like skin cancer, follow these very easy steps:
Slip on a shirt – You might think the season is all about letting loose and letting it hang, but need we remind you how awful that sunburn looks? That’s right, very awful. Long-sleeved shirts, long pants, or long skirts cover the most skin and are the most protective. Dark colors generally provide more protection than light colors. A tightly woven fabric protects better than loosely woven clothing. Dry fabric is generally more protective than wet fabric.
Slop on Sunscreen – Do not, and I mean do NOT spend over fifteen minutes out in the sun without your shield of protection. Even though sunblock is just a filter, it does not block all UV rays but they do block them to some extent.
Slap on a hat – Trendy don’t you think? Hats act as shade in the scorching sun.
Wrap on sunglasses – Eyewear is essential for protecting your eyes and the delicate skin around them.
Additionally, staying hydrated is very, very important. Water carries heat away from your internal organs before serious damage occurs, which can lead to heat stroke and even death. The heat travels through your bloodstream to your skin, causing you to sweat. As the sweat evaporates, this allows you to cool off and maintain a safe body temperature, optimal functioning and health. When in the sun, losing body water can adversely affect your functioning and health. Once you start feeling thirsty, you’ve probably lost about 1 percent of your body water and are dehydrated. With a 2 percent water loss, you could experience serious fatigue and cardiovascular impairments.
Some other good-to-know tips include:
• Avoid being out in the sun as much as possible from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.
• Choose cosmetics and contact lenses that offer UV protection. You still need to use sunscreen and wear sunglasses with broad-spectrum sun protection.
• Avoid Tanning beds and sunlamps
• Avoid spending too much time in the sun.
If you have any questions about sun and skin protection, we encourage you to contact our team of physicians at www.askthedoctor.com. Otherwise, we wish you a happy and safe Spring from the ATD team.ADVERTISEMENT
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