Boy putting on sunscreen

UV is a term that you may frequently hear because it’s commonly used by both laymen and medical professionals. But how much do you really know about UV and more importantly, UV safety? Summer is coming up, which means the sun is going to get hotter. As such, today we’ll be looking at UV safety to provide you with answers you may not have even known you needed.

What is UV?

According to Live Science, ultraviolet light (UV light) is a form of electromagnetic radiation. It makes black-light posters glow and is responsible for summer tans and even sunburns. Ultraviolet (UV) light and radiation come from the sun and some man-made sources, such as tanning beds. The level of UV you get exposed to is dependent on several factors, including the season of the year, where you live (distance from the equator), the time of day, etc. Because of these variables, we are able to practice UV safety.

Why UV Safety is Necessary

The primary reason we at Sioux Center Health and other healthcare providers and organizations encourage UV safety practices is to avert skin damage that could eventually cause skin cancers. The majority of skin cancers are resultant of over-exposure to ultraviolet (UV) rays, which mostly come from the sun.

How to Protect yourself from UV Light

Whether we are exposed to the sun for work or play, we all need to practice UV safety measures. Here are a few that’s easy to do every time we need to go outside in any sunny condition.

Use Sunscreen
It is best to use a broad-spectrum sunscreen, as they are efficient in blocking varying UV ray types. Also, they contain an SPF ( sun protection factor) of 15 or higher.

Use the Shade
Using the shade to shield yourself from the sun helps to reduce potential skin damage and skin cancer. Try using an umbrella or other forms of shelter. Even a tree works well.

Wear a Hat
A hat can do wonders when it comes to protection from UV. Opt for the hats that have a brim going all the way around. They shade the back of your neck, your face, and your ears.

Clothes
Clothes made from tightly woven fabric provide the best protection. Wearing a long-sleeved shirt and long pants and skirts reduces UV exposure. When you are at the beach, ensure to cover up once you get out of the water.

Wear Sunglasses
These cool accessories shield the eyes from UV rays and protect the skin surrounding your eyes.

Remember that even though going outside is essential and getting some amount of sunlight is healthy, overexposure to UV rays can lead to health complications. We encourage you to practice these UV safety measures and share them with those around you.