Summer is in full effect! Where will your family adventure this season? Take into account that the days are longer and the sun is hotter. Do you plan to cool off by the beach, go camping, or visit a theme park this year? Whichever way you choose to make memories with your friends and family this summer, don’t forget to splash into your Evolve Health Services pharmacy. Our summertime section includes items to keep your summer plans sailing smoothly and safely.
Staying Safe in the Summer Sun
While we rely on the sun’s rays for warmth and light, too much sun can cause damage to the skin. Skin damage from the sun can lead to painful burns. Sunlight is a type of ultraviolet light; that’s where the acronym UV comes from when referring to the sun. UV rays that reach the earth’s surface are either UVA or UVB:
UVA rays make up 95% of the rays that reach the earth.
UVB rays make up the remaining 5%.
Why is knowing about these types of rays important?
The earth isn’t the only thing absorbing these rays; your skin also does. Most times, this manifests as a tan or a sunburn. Excess exposure to UVA & UVB rays can cause:
No matter your skin type, you can be at risk for sun exposure issues. The Fitzpatrick Scale, shown below, is a classification system for skin types and their reaction to UV rays.
Many products help your skin before and after a summer day outside, including:
Aloe vera gel – which helps soothe sunburns.
Hats & Sunglasses – protect your head and face from the sun.
Sunscreen – helps filter UV rays from the sun to protect your skin from damage.
Proper Sunscreen Usage
As you look at bottles of sunscreen at your Evolve Health Services pharmacy, the letters SPF will always make an appearance on the label. SPF is the abbreviation for Sun Protection Factor. SPF measures how well the product will protect your skin against the sun. Dermatologists recommend using sunscreens with an SPF 30. While there may be sunscreens with various levels of SPF, some as high as 70, it’s good to know the levels of protection offered by each SPF number.
Level of protection from UVB Rays
The chart above shows that an increase in SPF level above 30 does not equal significantly more sun protection. This information is helpful to remember when purchasing sunscreen at your Evolve Health Services pharmacy.
Essential Factors to Keep in Mind When Applying Sunscreen
It is not enough to apply sunscreen once. Make sure to apply several layers of sunscreen. Water from swimming and sweating can affect your sunscreen layer. Reapply every two to three hours. This applies to sunscreens that claim to be water-resistant as well.
Sunscreen is to be applied to the face, neck, arms, legs, and lips too! Make sure you use sunscreen on every part of your skin that is in the sun. Many companies now even make lip balms with sunscreen in them.
Check your product expiration dates. Topical products lose efficacy over time, allowing sun rays to penetrate the sunscreen and damage your skin. We are more than happy to help!
Sun Safety Beyond the Beach
It would be best to pack sunscreen anytime you expect to be outside. Many usually think sun protection is necessary for beach days. Here are other times when you should use sunscreens:
Attending an outdoor wedding
Visiting a water park
Along with using sunscreens, any time you expect sun exposure, it’s important to remember to stay hydrated, seek shade when possible, and take periodic breaks. Our team at Evolve Health Services wants to make sure you enjoy your time in the sun. We are here to assist you! Be sure to see us before your next outdoor activity to ensure you don’t have to feel the burn this summer!