Soaking in the sun can mean being out by the pool, beach vacations, cookouts, and other outdoor activities. However, when having fun in the sun, it should also be second nature to take steps to protect yourself from UV radiation. Whether you’ve got a vacation coming up or you're just spending time outside, Cotton's Safety Team has some tips that could help protect you from UV damage.
- Cover up. Shield your skin from the sun’s UV rays by wearing long sleeves, wide-brimmed hats, and breathable pants. All fabrics block UV rays to some degree, but for the most effective protection invest in outdoor clothing that carries an Ultraviolet Protection Factor (UPF) rating. The UPF rating measures how well different fabrics block UV rays. The most effective UPF rating is from 15 to more than 50.
- Plan around the sun. It’s imperative to limit direct sun exposure during peak sun times (10 AM to 4 PM). Plan your outdoor activities during cooler parts of the day when the sun is lower in the sky. If you’re going to be outside during this time, take plenty of breaks in the shade to cool off. Take caution not to let your body overheat.
- Stay hydrated. Proper hydration is essential for your overall health. The recommended water consumption for the average person is six to eight glasses per day. Drinking enough water is especially important when it’s a scorcher outside. When the skin burns, it loses a lot of fluid. With warmer temperatures, consider the additional water your body loses. If you don’t replace the water you lose, you will become dehydrated.
- Protect your eyes. Sunglasses aren’t just a fashion accessory; they can protect your eyes from UV rays. Extended exposure to UV rays from the sun can lead to extensive eye damage, and this risk is higher at the beach because rays reflect off the sand and water. Wear protective sunglasses that block at least 99% of UV light. The shades you opt for should reduce glare, protect your entire eye area, be comfortable to wear, and shouldn't distort color.
- Don’t ignore your sunburn. We know you didn’t mean to get sunburned, but if you do, it’s essential to treat it properly. Stay hydrated, take a refreshing bath, and applying moisturizer regularly. Minimize risk by using over-the-counter hydrocortisone and stay out of the sun while your sunburn heals.
Make this a summer to remember! Take all of the necessary precautions and stay safe in the sun. From all of us at Cotton, where safety is our top priority, we wish you a safe and wonderful summer with your loved ones!