When it comes to fun in the sun, people tend to forget that they should be mindful of how much time they spend outside. Did you know that July is UV Safety Month? Just like any other part of your body, your eyes need to be protected from the sun’s rays! Keep reading to learn how to be prepared for your next outdoor adventure!
Everyone knows that when they go outside, they are supposed to put on sunscreen. However, many people still don’t put it on or don’t put on enough. Year-round, it’s important to wear sunscreen. You can still get a sunburn if it’s cloudy outside! Make sure that your sunscreen is at least SPF 15. Any lower will not protect you properly from UV radiation, thanks to the sun’s rays. When applying sunscreen, use a palmful on your entire body. Don’t forget to re-apply, even if you’ve purchased waterproof sunscreen. Re-apply all sunscreen every two hours that you’re outside to prevent sunburn.
Besides putting on sunscreen to protect your skin, your eyes need protection as well. The number one rule to remember—do not stare directly at the sun! You cannot see the UV radiation that the sun’s rays emit, but they can do a real number on your eyes if you stare directly at the sun. If you know that you are going to be in the sun during peak intensity (from 10 am until 4 pm) make sure you’re wearing sunglasses that protect your eyes. Even if you have dark lenses in your sunglasses, it doesn’t mean that your eyes are properly protected. Sunglasses must say that they protect from UV radiation in order to be most effective.
In addition to wearing the proper sunglasses with UV protection, here at Mid Ohio Eye, we recommend investing in a wide brim sun hat. On sunny days, sunglasses may not always be enough to protect you, so it’s important that you have other options as well! Don’t forget that sunscreen should also be supplemented with shade-protective clothing as well. Avoid a sunburn by wearing sleeves and pants when possible to keep your skin safe! If you do happen to get a sunburn, invest in aloe vera to help reduce the pain of a burn and keep peeling skin to a minimum.
UV safety involves more than just UV rays from the sun. Many people like to get a tan using indoor tanning beds. Tanning beds are just as harmful as baking in the sun. In fact, by getting a tan, your skin is reacting to the inevitable skin damage that UV rays are creating. When you participate in any kind of indoor tanning, including sun-lamps, tanning beds, and tanning booths, you are increasing your risk of skin cancer and permanent skin damage. Just say no to tanning!
Although July is UV Safety Month, it’s important to practice smart sun habits all year long! Have questions about how to keep your eyes safe? Schedule a consultation with the talented doctors at Mid Ohio Eye today!