Tips to Help You Prevent Sunbun This Summer

Did you know that one severe sunburn in childhood doubles your chances of getting melanoma, a type of skin cancer, as an adult? Five or more sunburns at any age double your risk for skin cancer in general, according to Mayo Clinic research.

The Skin Cancer Foundation recommends using sunscreen with a sun protection factor (SPF) of 15 or greater. This means you have 15 times more protection than you would without the sunscreen. Be sure to use an ounce of the stuff for your entire body—equal to a shot glass—and consider SPF 30 or 45 for extra protection. 

Apply sunscreen 30 minutes before you go into the sun so your skin can absorb it. Then re-apply every two hours, and after exercising or going in the water (even if the sunscreen is waterproof or water-resistant). Avoid peak burning hours between 10 a.m. and 4 p.m., and wear a brimmed hat and UV-protective sunglasses. 

If you get sunburned, get out of the sun and drink fluids to prevent dehydration. Soak in a cool bath to relieve pain, or take acetaminophen to dull a headache, fever or chills. Lightly moisturize skin if you begin to peel, and don’t go out in the sun until you’re healed. 


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