Sun safety

Consider these sun safety tips when you're spending time outside

Spending time outdoors — it's a great way to be active and healthy. When you're out in the sun, it's important to  think about sun safety too. Consider these tips to help protect yourself. 

Sunscreen

Your skin can burn even on a cloudy day. Use a sunscreen with an SPF (Sun Protection Factor) of at least 30 to block out the majority of the suns’ UVB rays. Choose a sunscreen labeled “Broad Spectrum”. Remember, sunscreens are not waterproof, only “water resistant”, so be sure to reapply at least every two hours.1  

Protecting your skin

Skin cancer is the most common form of cancer. Self-exams can help you identify potential skin cancers early. Use “ABCDE” to help you remember what to look for:2

  • A = Asymmetry: the shape of one half does not match the other.
  • B = Border that is irregular. Borders of early melanoma can be uneven, notched or scalloped.
  • C = Color that is uneven. A variety of colors can be a warning sign.
  • D = Diameter is larger than the eraser on a pencil.
  • E = Evolving. The mole has changed in size, shape, elevation or color.

The eyes have it

Help protect your eyes by wearing UV blocking sunglasses and broad brimmed hats — even on cloudy days. Also never look directly into the sun.

Heat-related illnesses

Heat-related illnesses occur when the body is overheated and cannot properly cool itself. Heat related illnesses can be life threatening and can also cause damage to the brain and other vital organs. 

Become familiar with these symptoms:

  • Heat Exhaustion: heavy sweating, cold, pale, clammy skin, fast or weak pulse, nausea or vomiting, muscle cramps, tired or weakness, dizziness, headache, fainting. Seek medical help right away if the person is vomiting or if symptoms worsen or last more than an hour.
  • Heat Stroke: High body temperature of 103 degrees F or higher, hot, red, dry or damp skin, fast/strong pulse, headaches, dizziness, nausea, confusion, losing consciousness. Call 911 right away! Heat stroke is a medical emergency.

Help prevent heat-related illnesses by following these simple rules

  • Stay hydrated
  • Wear appropriate clothing
  • Stay cool indoors
  • Never leave anyone in a closed, parked vehicle

Watch over others who may be at risk

  • People over 65
  • People with chronic conditions
  • Infants and children
  • Outdoor workers
  • Low income households
  • Athletes

Footnotes

  1. American Cancer Society, Choose the Right Sunscreen, www.cancer.org/latest-news/choose-the-right-sunscreen.html, accessed August 28,2019.
  2. American Cancer Society, Signs and Symptoms of Vulvar Cancers and Pre-Cancers, www.cancer.org/cancer/vulvar-cancer/detection-diagnosis-staging/signs-symptoms.html; accessed August 28, 2019.

Disclaimers

The information provided in this flier is for general informational purposes only and is not intended nor should be construed as medical advice. Individuals should consult an appropriate medical professional to determine
what may be right for them.