Stay safe in the sun should be the “watchword” of us all. Skin cancer is the most common type of cancer here in the UK. At this point in time there are approximately 100,000 new cases diagnosed in the UK every year, and the incidence rate is increasing year on year.
It makes no difference what your age is, the only way of protecting your skin and making sure you stay safe in the sun, is by applying a combination of the following:
- Wearing appropriate clothes
- Seeking shade when necessary to avoid over-exposure to the sun’s rays
- Using the right factor sun cream
Okay, let’s get down to specifics. We will give you 7 top tips (based on the above combinations) that will help to stay safe in the sun.
Stay safe in the sun top tip 1 – wear protective clothing
We are not of course talking about the type of protective clothing that is issued in the workplace. We are talking about normal everyday wear that can stop parts of your body being directly exposed to the rays of the sun: long legged trousers, long sleeved shirts, and hats – preferable wide brimmed, which can also help to protect your ears, lips and nose, as well as your scalp.
Tip 2- Wear sunglasses
Apart from being a cool fashion accessory, good quality sunglasses can also serve to protect your eyes from the sun, thereby helping to minimise the chances of developing cataracts. When choosing a pair of sunglasses, look for ones that offer 99%/100% blockage of both UVA and UVB.
Tip 3 – Select exposure time carefully
Only mad dogs and Englishmen go out in the midday sun according to Noel Coward; however, it’s not just midday which is the “witching hour.” You should limit your exposure time to the sun, to outside the period of 11AM to 3PM.
Tip 4 – Choose the right sun cream and apply it correctly
For most people, a sun cream with an SPF (Sun Protection Factor) of 15 is sufficient. SPF 25 is the recommended sun cream, and anyone with freckles, pale skin, red hair, or a skin condition like eczema, should choose higher factors. It should be applied liberally, about 30 minutes before exposure, and reapplied every 2 hours.
Tip 5 – Don’t blame it on vitamin D
Sunshine is one of the rare sources of vitamin D; so many people use this as an excuse for raising their body’s levels of this important vitamin. However, there are other sources too. Ask your GP, or one of the doctors here at Broadgate GP Clinic London Wall, about alternative sources.
Tip 6 – Get up-close and personal with your skin
Skin cancer is easier and more effective to treat when diagnosed early, so you need to get to know your skin intimately, and keep an eye open for any new growths or lesions. Do a little research on what to typically look out for.
Tip 7 – Stay out of the sun
All of these tips may help to stay safe in the sun and keep you and your skin healthy, but there is no guarantee. The only sure-fire way of avoiding sun-associated conditions is to avoid the sunshine whenever possible.
Even when there is no sun you can also still apply sun cream. Although the sun itself may not be visible behind cloud cover, UVA and UVB radiation is still around.
Advice from Broadgate GP Clinic London Wall
If you are concerned about exposing your skin and staying safe in the sun; or you have any dubious skin lesions that may have appeared, you can get advice from one of our doctors here at Broadgate GP Clinic London Wall. You can also buy sun creams over the counter at our in-house pharmacy.