You spend a lot of your free time outdoors when you’re a kid, so it might not come as a surprise that the Skin Cancer Foundation estimates 80% of lifetime sun exposure occurs during childhood – and that just one blistering sunburn could double your risk of getting skin cancer later in life. Help your kiddos enjoy a summer that’s both safe and fun with these tips for safeguarding them from extreme heat and sun.
Tips for Practicing Sun Safety
Make sunscreen a non-negotiable part of your routine.
Get everyone in the habit of applying sunscreen 30 minutes before heading outside, even if skies are gray. Don’t let the clouds fool you – you can still get burnt on gloomy, gray days! Big kids can apply their own sunscreen, but you can help by making sure they don’t miss any spots – like the top of their feet, back of their neck, part in their hair, and their ears! The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommend using a sunscreen with at least 15 SPF and UVA & UVB protection.
Move the fun indoors during the sunniest parts of the day.
The sun’s UV rays are most powerful during the middle of the day, from about 11:00 AM to 2:00 PM. This is a perfect time to go inside for lunch, cool down, and maybe even take a midday nap. You can also have fun indoors playing board games, watching a movie, or trying a new recipe. Check out these kid-approved, unplugged activities for more options!
When kids are running around in the summer heat, they may not remember to take a breather and drink some water. You may have to remember for them! Young children don’t have fully developed sweating mechanisms, either, so they are more prone to overheating. Check that you always have water on hand for your children and remind them to take regular water breaks. Of course, a visit to the community pool will help them cool off, too!
Cover up with clothing, protective hats, and sunglasses.
The less skin that is exposed to the sun, the better! Clothing made of tightly woven fabric works best to block UV rays, and you can even purchase clothing created for the purpose of sun protection. Pop a hat on your child’s head to shade their face, and don’t forget the sunglasses – UV rays can be incredibly damaging to their sensitive eyes.
Seek shade. It’s your best friend!
When you’re outside with your children during sunny hours, get out of direct sunlight by seeking out shade under a shady tree or umbrella.. A little shade can reduce their risk (and yours) of sunburn and overheating!
These tips can help you have a safe and fun summer, but so can a Roadside Assistance plan from Direct Auto Insurance. Watch the video below to learn more about Roadside Assistance today!