As the weather warms up, it’s no surprise that your kids are going to want to be outside. It’s less of a surprise that you’re going to love getting them out of the house! However, it’s important to know that sun, even in small doses, can cause harm to your child if not protected.
Whether it’s playing in the yard, swimming at the pool, or just taking the dog for a walk, it’s important to take a few extra steps to ensure your little one’s safety. Here are a few tips to help you remember.
Tip 1: The sun’s rays are strongest between 10AM and 4PM.
If you’re planning a day outside, take a look at the weather. If it’s going to be a scorcher, chances are you’ll want to seek shade between these hours, or at least stay out of direct sunlight. If you have a child under 6 months, keep them out of direct sunlight at all possible times.
Tip 2: Clouds don’t mean less sun.
Because the sun’s rays aren’t hitting you directly, you may not full as much heat, but that doesn’t mean the rays aren’t reaching you! Make sure you stay just as protected on a cloudy day.
Tip 3: SPF 15 or greater is your safest bet.
In fact, most will say that SPF 30 is the go to choice. When purchasing a sunscreen, make sure to pick one that is higher than SPF 15 to protect your child’s skin.
Tip 4: Sun resistant doesn’t mean water resistant!
If you’re planning a pool or beach day, make sure to buy water resistant sunscreen. Sweating, swimming, and even drying off can cause your child to lose protection.
Tip 5: Sunscreen needs time to work, and more is never a bad thing!
Reapplying sunscreen is a must, regardless of being in water. Apply your first coat about 30 minutes before walking outside, then continue reapplying around every two hours to avoid burns.
Tip 6: Light colored cotton clothing or swim gear is better than bare skin.
We know that it’s hot, and clothing is the last thing anyone wants to deal with, but light colored clothing can reflect sunlight, causing less of a chance of sunburn. If your child is swimming, try to utilize swim gear to prevent direct sunlight.
Tip 7: Protect your eyes.
It’s easy to forget that your eyes are a sensitive area, especially when focusing heavily on skin. But, your eyes can receive just as much damage from the sun. Sunglasses, umbrellas, and hats can be huge helpers here.
The sun is fun, so we don’t expect you to ever avoid it all around. However, taking these few steps can prevent you and your child from burns, pain, and blisters, as well as potentially life threatening issues such as cancer.
Make sure to check your child’s skin for suspicious looking moles or burns, and contact Davidson Family Medicine today at (704) 892-5454 if you feel that your child is at risk of any possible skin issue.