It’s important to stay safe while having fun in the sun this summer.
It’s important that seniors soak up some rays while enjoying the great outdoors which is proven to lower cholesterol and increase vitamin D levels. However, because UV rays from the sun are the leading cause of skin cancer, it’s important to stay safe while enjoying the great outdoors. As we age, we become even more sensitive to UV rays, and our skin recovers more slowly from sun damage.
Here are a few sun-safety steps for seniors to take when protecting against the sun’s UV rays. Cover up with a hat, use sunglasses, and seek out shade whenever possible. But, one of the best precautions that anyone can take is to use a broad-spectrum sunscreen of SPF 30 or higher, and making sure to use it properly.
How to Choose & Use Sunscreen
Here’s what to look for when buying the right sunscreen to keep safe this summer:
- Broad-spectrum protection, which helps block both varieties of damaging sun rays: UVA and UVB.
- Sun-protection factor (SPF) rated at least 30. This SPF number is essentially how “strong” the sunscreen is.
- Water and sweat resistance. This will help the sunscreen stay effective while in the pool or sweating. It’s important to note that “water resistance” and “sweat resistance” does not mean “water proof” or “sweat proof”. It’s always key to reapply sunscreen regularly, no matter what.
Once the right sunscreen is chosen, here are some tips for properly applying it:
- Apply thoroughly and completely. Be sure to cover all the skin that will be exposed to the sun fully. This is especially important with spray-on sunscreens, which must be rubbed in after being sprayed on to be effective.
- Reapply regularly. Most sunscreens suggest reapplying at least every two hours, and should be reapplied more often if being active and sweating profusely or swimming.