Best Tips to Enjoy the Sun and Outdoors Safely| August 03, 2021
Science says that our skin promotes vitamin D synthesis upon exposure to the sun, an essential vitamin for keeping muscle, bone, and teeth healthy1. So, in fear of getting sunburn, people refrain from sun exposure and suffer from diseases related to vitamin D deficiency, including osteomalacia and rickets2.
On the other hand, excessive exposure to the sun can lead to severe skin health hazards. What’s the catch, by the way? Is sunlight really a good or bad thing? Suppose you maintain the right balance by spending much time under the shades and lesser time under the direct UV radiation by taking all the preventive measures. In that case, you can enjoy your outdoor activities.
Getting sufficient sunlight, not in the peak hours, is healthy, but if you exceed the exposure to the sun, it can destroy the balance. Here we have got some useful tips to tackle sunlight while you are enjoying the outdoors! So, let’s get right into them!
1. Never Forget Applying Sunscreen
The first and the most critical measure is applying sunscreen when you are going to expose your skin to the sun. To enjoy the sun and enjoy the outdoors safely, it is essential to wear sunscreen. It helps to prevent sunburns, skin cancer, and sun poisoning. Wear a high-SPF (sun protection factor) sunscreen every single day, even when it's cloudy3. There is a variety of sunscreens available today, and you must choose the one that suits the intensity of rays.
There are no exceptions to applying sunblock –do it daily whenever you are going for enjoying the sun outdoors. Many makeup products and moisturizers come with SPF properties for your convenience –you can get those too!4
2. Apply Bug Repellants
If you’re looking to spend quality time in gardens, beaches, or backyards, never forget to apply Greenerways organic bug repellant to have a safe experience. These places contain much more insects that may attack and harm you. To be on the safe side, you should spray the repellant on your clothing and even apply a sound layer over your face. Moreover, make sure you reapply this spray every 3 to 4 hours as long as you’re in insect-rich areas.
3. Stay In the Shade
One of the best preventive measures to stay safe while you are enjoying outdoor activities is limiting exposure to the sun. But, of course, prevention is better than cure –it’s the common saying5. Applying sunblock does not mean that you can spend countless hours in the sweltering UV rays. Instead, your exposure to the sun should be in chunks, so –a mixture of shaded area and sun.
If you’re up for a beach party, try to create your own shade or cool down under the trees. You can create your shade using umbrellas, canopies, or tents. Moreover, even the cloudy weather isn’t safe for direct exposure; it still contains 80% of UV rays.
Staying in the shade is only a part of prevention because some fabrics can allow UV rays to pass through and damage your skin. So, make sure you follow all other preventive measures.
4. Wear Protective Summer Outfit
We usually prefer wearing thin and sleek fabric clothes in summers to ensure breathability, forgetting that the tiny gaps between the fibers can serve as gateways for UV rays. YES! You read that right! UV radiations are potent enough that they can even enter your clothes and cause substantial skin damage.
What Sort of Clothing Should You Prefer?
You should always prefer tightly woven fabric with loose-fitting, long sleeves and lightweight pants and shirts. Whatever you are wearing, make sure the material is solid and dark-colored. Plus, make sure that your entire body is at least covered to limit exposure to the sun.
What is the secret behind preferring darker colors, by the way? Dark colors tend to absorb more radiations than lighter and pastel colors. The greater the absorption, the lesser is the amount of UV radiation reaching your body. So make sure whenever you are going outdoors, wear vibrant colors like bright yellow, deep red, black, etc., to optimize the protection6.
Avoid wearing too old or worn dresses in the sun; they are prone to radiation. Plus, when you’re wet, don’t go in the sun directly –UV rays can pass through wet fibers more often.
Manufacturers are designing some trendy swimming dresses and rash guards with built-in UV protection. You can go for such dresses because they make you feel cool and fashionable at the same time.
5. Never Miss Out on Sunglasses
Believe it or not, sunglasses are more than a protective measure for sunny days than just adding a classy look to your outfit. Just like sunscreens protect your skin, clothing limits UV radiations to reach the body, sunglasses are important to protect your eyes.
Importance of Wearing Sunglasses
- Prevent Health Hazards
The eyes are sensitive to getting damaged when exposed to the sun for prolonged hours –from painful ailments to deadly situations. Nearly 10% of skin cancers occur in the eyelids and skin around the eyes, so wearing sunglasses with huge lenses is essential.
Moreover, UV radiations are concerned with causing Cataracts and worsening the symptoms of Glaucoma –eye-related serious illnesses that can even cause blindness7. You should always wear high-quality UV-proof sunglasses to prevent this. Moreover, Macular Degeneration and Pterygium lead to impaired vision that further worsen upon excessive exposure to UV. The best treatment is prevention by wearing full-proof polarized glasses8.
- Provide Good Outdoor Experience
If you are on a hike to any beautiful area, wearing polarized sunglasses will reduce the glare, enhance color contrast, and increase the sharpness. With these sunglasses, you will get an optimal viewing experience, especially the life under the water.
- Make You Comfortable
Intense sunlight often causes migraines and headaches that get stuck on the head and don’t go easily. But, on the other hand, you can have countless hours of comfortable outdoor experience without getting eye strain or fatigue.
What’s meant by high-quality sunglasses? Good sunglasses are those that offer both UVA and UVB protection for ultimate protection against harmful UV rays. The glasses’ lens should be large enough to cover the entire eye region and wrap around the sides. Getting a polarized lens isn’t a bad idea if you have a lot of swimming activities.
6. Avoid Sun Exposure During Peak Hours
The UV Index is a measurement of sunburn-producing ultraviolet radiation strength. The value of the UV index can reach up to 11 during sunny days within critical hours, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. If you can schedule your outdoor activities, make sure to check the UV index and avoid sun exposure when the value is greater than 3.
During these critical hours, the intensity of ultraviolet rays is at its peak, and its damaging capacity is maximum. Suntan, sunburns, and excessive exposure leads to melanoma and skin cancer. Melanoma is the form of skin cancer that occurs in skin cells –melanocytes. These melanocytes control skin pigmentation and lead to melanoma formation upon excessive exposure to the sun9.
So firstly, try not to get out of your home during this time. However, if it’s important, take every preventive measure and try to stay under the shade as much as possible. In this way, you can enjoy the sunshine and outdoors while remaining safe.
7. Always Wear a Wide-Brimmed Hat
According to the research, the most common sites prone to skin cancers are the face, nose, neck, forehead, and eyes. It is because these parts receive the maximum amount of ultraviolet radiation10. So, after applying a thick coat of broad-spectrum sunscreen against UVA and UVB to all these areas, you have to add an extra protecting guard –the wide-brimmed hat.
Which Hat Should You Choose?
Have a trendy, updated collection of wide-brimmed hats matching your outfits, so you just don’t need to compromise your classy looks for the sake of protection against the sun. You have to choose a hat that’s beautiful and comfortable to carry the hours of outdoor activities.
The common issue with so many wide-brimmed hats is that they blow off easily due to winds –thanks to the imbalanced construction. So, make sure the ones you choose shouldn’t get off quickly to interfere with your play or work.
Moreover, always keep in mind that the hat’s fabric should be tightly woven –if you see through the fabric, it lets through the UV radiations. Finally, wide-brimmed caps offer excellent protection to the scalp from the intense rays that can cause many ailments.
8. Follow a Healthy Skin Care Regime
Your skin care product selection must be healthy so that your skin can bear the stress of sun and outdoor conditions. One of the essential minerals that our body never gets enough of in diet is magnesium. Using magnesium-based products available at HEAL such as OSIMAGNESIUM Cooling Massage Lotion, CBD creams, body butter, and body lotions greatly improve your skin’s health. If you are getting HEAL’s exclusive skincare products, which are entirely free from paraben and silicone, you’ll get the real benefits of magnesium.
Some essential oils, including Cinnamon, Tea Tree Oil, Ginger, and Clary Sage, have optimal antibacterial, antimicrobial, and antifungal benefits. When you have sound protection against harmful outdoor substances and good health to fight against them, you will enjoy your outdoor experience.
9. Stay Hydrated
Keeping the utmost importance of water in mind, how can we neglect to mention this factor here? When you are drinking sufficient water, your body temperature is regulated, joints are lubricated, cells are nourished, infections are prevented, and many more. If you’re an athlete, staying hydrated is much more important for exploring the fullest of your potential11.
Dehydration occurs when the body loses more fluids than it actually intakes –probably because of high temperatures and ultraviolet rays. Some common symptoms include stopped sweating, dried lips and eyes, weakness, nausea, vomiting, and muscle cramps. Your body can become dehydrated if you are spending countless hours under the sun or outdoors without drinking enough water12.
If you want to enjoy the outdoors safely, never compromise on getting enough fluids, including fresh juices and water. Ensure that you keep a refillable water bottle in your bag every time you are away from home. The insulated water bottles can keep the iced water for up to several hours, so if you’re going under the sun, these bottles are great for you.
10. Avoid Heat Exhaustion
If you are playing outdoors or exercising on a hot day, there is a good chance that you get heat exhaustion. Children are much more prone to this situation because their bodies cannot cool down faster, and they start feeling overheated, exhausted, and weak. Its symptoms include excessive sweating and increased pulse rate.
A severe form of heat exhaustion is heat stroke that can even let someone stop sweating. The skin becomes red hot, and the person may become uncoordinated or even unconscious. If you are having any initial symptoms like headaches, nausea, or dizziness, you must tell someone and seek help. Immediately, shade yourself, drink sufficient water, and go to the doctor if the situation worsens13.
You just must be aware of what is going inside your body; only this can save you from severe heat-related illnesses.
The Bottom Line
You can enjoy the outdoor activities to your fullest potentials if you cover your body, apply sunscreens, wear hats and sunglasses, spray your body with bug repellent, and keep your body hydrated. That is all you need to protect your skin from getting suntans, hyperpigmentation, and melanoma. Whenever you are out, try to spend as much as less time under the direct sunlight –use umbrellas or canopies. After reading the article, your question ‘how to enjoy the outdoors safely’ must be answered!
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