Sun Protection Tips

From the Skin Cancer Foundation and EPA websites:  

Babies and children are extra sensitive to the sun, and protecting their skin is paramount.

Lifetime UV exposure is very strongly correlated with the development of skin cancer and premature skin aging.  

UV exposure increases with higher altitudes:  here in Fort Collins at 5,000 feet our exposure is about 25% more than at sea level:

MountainUVincrease

  • Avoid sun exposure between the hours of 10 and 4, when the sun is more intense.
  • Use sunscreen with an SPF of 30 or greater (the higher the better, since most people don’t apply sunscreen as thick as they should).
  • If using a spray sunscreen, don’t spray it directly on the face (spray it into your hands and then rub it on your child’s face).  
  • Make sure your sunscreen provides protection from both ultraviolet A (UVA) and ultraviolet B (UVB) rays.  Reapply every two hours, even on cloudy days, and especially after swimming or sweating.
  • Use Extra Caution Near Water, Snow and Sand /Concrete – these surfaces can reflect the damaging rays of the sun, which can increase your chance of sunburn.
  • Wear sun protective clothing (long sleeved non-bleached cotton shirts are cool and protective).  Avoid white t-shirts which often have an SPF of 7 or less.  UPF clothing with built in titanium can help lighter-colored fabrics have better protection.
  • Rit Sunguard can wash SPF 30 protection into ordinary clothing, and lasts for ~ 20 wash cycles.
  • Wear a wide-brimmed hat to protect the lower face, ears, and neck, even on overcast days.  
  • Wear sunglasses to protect skin around the eyes, and also lessen the chance of developing cataracts or ocular melanoma (melanoma of the retina).