How to Be Sun Smart

Even though the feeling in your skin is cold, if the sun is shining, you can get burned. It is the same as when the sun is shining but there are clouds in the sky. Without protection on your skin, you can get burned without realizing it until you get indoors.

One thing to know about sun damage is that it is cumulative. Exposure over time can increase the damage done to your skin. As we are all aware of, this can lead to leathery skin, age spots, blemishes and even skin cancers.

Protecting your skin all year round from the sun is important. Here are some tips to help you have fun in the sun and still stay safe.

* Wear hats – Even if you are going for a walk outdoors, wear a hat to protect you from the sun. If your hair is thin or you are bald, a hat will keep the sun off of you. A brim in the front gives added protection to your face.

* Wear sunscreen – UVA radiation is still a danger in the winter. It can penetrate your skin and damage deeper tissues. You don’t necessarily need a high sun protection factor but use at least an SPF of 15 on your body. Cover all areas that are exposed. Don’t forget the back of your neck.

* Wear sunglasses – In the winter, the sun can reflect off of the surface of the snow. This can cause a temporary burning of the corneas and lead to snow blindness. For a time, you are in effect blind. While it is disconcerting it is also dangerous to your eyes. Wearing proper sun gear can avoid this trouble. Be sure that your glasses or goggles have approved UV radiation in the lenses. Dark lenses are not the same and do not provide the same protection. You don’t want to be snowboarding and get snow blindness because of cheap glasses.

* Wear gloves – Even on walks, gloves protect the skin from drying but also from the sun. Kids who play a lot outdoors need gloves to preserve warmth.