Did you know that the Skin Cancer Foundation estimates that 80% of lifetime sun exposure occurs when we’re kids? In fact, just one blistering sunburn can increase your chances of getting melanoma by 50%! You may not be able to turn the clocks on your own skin, but you can be proactive when it comes to your kids. Of course, you can prevent further damage to your skin by protecting yourself just as well as the kids.
As you enjoy your swimming pool this summer season, keep these following sun safety tips in mind.
Apply Sunscreen Properly
If you’re planning on going for a swim in your pool, generously apply sunscreen 30 minutes before you head outdoors. This gives the sunscreen time to work into the skin and provide the best coverage. Choose a sunscreen with SPF 15 or higher that protects against UVA and UVB rays. Reapply the sunscreen every 2 to 3 hours or after swimming.
Cover Up with Sun Suits
If you’re going for a swim, covering up may seem counterproductive. But it’s very possible. Choose swimsuits for the kids that cover the arms, legs and neck. There are plenty of cute styles available, especially for babies and toddlers. Plus, you don’t have to worry about reapplying as much sunscreen throughout the day. Don’t forget other accessories like sunglasses, wide-brimmed hats and umbrellas. This is your backyard, so you’re in control.
Seek Plenty of Shade
It’s recommended that you limit your time outdoors during 10 am to 4 pm, but we understand that these are some of the best times to swim. If you must be out during these hours, be especially diligent with applying sunscreen and covering up. Also seek shade. Hopefully your pool is surrounded by some shaded trees that will provide you with additional coverage.
Read Medication Labels
Some medications increase the skin’s sensitivity to the sun. Prescription antibiotics are some of the biggest culprits, so be mindful about what medications your family is taking. If you have any doubts, call the pharmacist.
Set a Good Example
You never want to deter your kids from spending time outdoors, especially in an era where video games and smartphones pin kids to the couch. But you should take sun care seriously. Set a good example by following the same rules for yourself: wearing sunscreen, covering up with hats, sunglasses and protective clothing and staying in the shade. The more your kids see you do this, the more likely they will follow through with their own sun safety.