During the summer months it is very important to be careful while outside, especially during 11am and 3pm as this is when the sun is at its strongest.
The skin is the body’s largest organ so to help protect it during the hot summer months you should always try to,
- Make sure you drink plenty of fluids, especially water.
- Always protect the skin with sunscreen.
- Always protect your eyes by wearing sunglasses.
When you are out in the sun and you are hot you start to sweat, this is the body’s way of cooling down so you don’t overheat. Sweating causes the body to lose vital fluids at a faster rate than it usually would, and if you are not replacing the fluid you are losing by sweating you may become dehydrated, and this can cause heat stroke, so therefore it is always important to stay safe in the sun.
For the best protection from the sun, you should use all 5 of these SunSmart tips to keep you healthy whilst out in the summer.
5 principles of sun safety: Slip, Slop, Slap, Slide, Shade
- Slip on a vest or t-shirt for coverage
- Slop on at least an SPF 30+ broad spectrum UVA sunscreen.
- Slap on a large, brimmed hat.
- Slide on quality sunglasses with UV protection.
- Shade from the sun whenever possible.
Sunscreen should be applied every morning before going outside as this gives the sunscreen time to soak into your skin giving instant protection from the sun’s harmful rays. The higher the SPF (Sun Protection Factor) the more protection you have from the sun so when you are choosing sun care products keep this in mind. Children should always have sunscreen with a factor of SPF50 as children have more sensitive skin than most adults, so they are at a higher risk of sun damage. Sun cream should always be reapplied after sweating or swimming as even water-resistant sunscreens need to be topped up to ensure you continue to stay safe in the sun. You should also re apply sun screen every two hours.
For more information on sun screen please visit the NHS website
If you have any questions about how to stay safe in the sun you can contact your school nurse by visiting the ChatHealth page
Written By; Justine Hickey School Nurse
How to stay hydrated
- Drink plenty of water.
- Understand the signs of dehydration.
- Check the colour of your urine, if it it dark it may be a sign you are dehydrated.
- Avoid alcohol, sugary drinks, and/or caffeine.
- Eat foods with a high water content.