Remember safety when getting tan

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, June 11, 2008

With the average high reaching 90 degrees daily, many are resorting to outdoors activities for recreation while others work in the blistering heat.

Whether it&8217;s a day at the pool, a Sunday afternoon on the Tombigbee, or just cutting the lawn, at some point in time, time will be spent in the sun.

For some, the sun and its health threats seem to pose no hazard. However, the grim reality is the sun is always out to get us&8230;but there are ways to help protect our skin, and in the long run, our life.

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Sunburn is caused by acute exposure to ultraviolet radiation. UVA radiation, although it is not the primary cause for burning, does lead to premature aging of the skin.

Burning can be blamed in large part on UVB rays, which all sunscreen typically filter out.

According to the American Academy of Dermatology&8217;s website, sun exposure is the most preventable risk factor for all skin cancers, including the most lethal, melanoma.

Also, the group suggests only using sunscreens that block against both UVA and UVB rays.

Terre Moore, a local certified registered nurse practitioner who sees sunburn cases all throughout the summer, said one of the most important things to remember while in the sun is hydration.

Along the same lines, she suggests regularly applying sunscreen when outdoors &045; even in the shade. For children, use at least a sunscreen with Sun Protection Factor of 45, and stay out of the sun from around 10 a.m. until 2 p.m., when the sun poses the most danger.

With a typical sunburn, the victim is feeling the full effect within 3 days of the exposure, but by taking heed to a few simple precautions, a day in the sun can be a day of fun&8230;with no detrimental aftermath.