Do you have a personal list of tips for safe fun in the sun? Or are you still mentally trying to figure out how much of this sun safety stuff you want to try to add to your lifestyle? https://www.sbm.org/healthy-living/sun-safety-protect-your-skin-this-summer-and-all-year-round?
Is it really as dangerous to spend time in the sun as it sounds like it is? Have you come up with limitations for your family in the sun? The last real question to consider is when was your last exam by your dermatologist? What words of caution do your receive at that time?
As I learn about sun danger and try to figure out how to make it relevant to my families lifestyle, I get a mental overload. What is important? Why is that a priority over something else? Which of the healthier suggestions should I work on first? Where are the weak spots in our sun protection? Will it be more important to work with changes for the older family members, or the younger? Choose The Best Sunglasses
I usually think younger family members are more important, but that is because I usually get more cooperation from the younger members! Where should we be making the most effort?
Choose Your Battles
Give some thought to which battle to fight. This is often a survival tactic. I know that the younger members are usually easier to encourage safer habits with. However, if the older family members practice good sun safety, the younger ones will usually follow.
I have found that starting small usually gets a better response. So unless it is during the hotest and most dangerous sun ray times of day for us here in central Texas, I will encourage sunscreen. If it is 10 AM to 4 PM, during the months of May through October, then I will be encouraging and offering sun blocking shirts.
Both times I will encourage the wearing of wide brim hats and sunglasses. Beyond the shirt, hats, sunglasses and sunscreen I will work with the hours we are out, something I have not done in the past.
Will I get full fledged coroporation? Of course not. I do hope for an awareness in my family of how to stay safe in the sun. Which battles do you plan to work on? What is your plan for sun safety for your family?
Adding Sun Block Clothing
So my personal plan includes adding more sun blocking clothing. The reason I choose to add the sun block clothing is because we already use sunscreen. I am not sure we are using it correctly as we have been receiving sunburn all along. This makes me think we need to work on that too.
I do know that to get everyone receptive, the sun block clothing will need to be attractive. The next thing is it must be comfortable. Getting my family going into a safer sun fun lifestyle is going to take some adjustment. (They aren’t going to be excited to make changes, even with attractive and comfortable sun block clothing, This will not happen overnight.)
Times of Sun Exposure
Times we are going to be out in the sun are going to need to be considered and evaluated. Will we really have more fun at high noon during the hottest most direct sun days? Or could some adjustments be in order?
Who does the planning for your families fun in the sun outings? Have they inherited events that always happened at noon? We lived on a farm when I was young. Swimming parties took place late morning and early afternoon for a reason. There were cows to milk, livestock to feed and chickens that also ate on weekends or fun sun days as well. There was no fast food. Our meals had to be cooked from scratch.
Our events were scheduled around work that had to happen. As most friends were farmers as well, this was their lifestyle too. You could only play when the work was done. The taking care of livestock and chickens happened in the evenings too. Those critters didn’t care if it was the weekend or a fun in the sun day!
I haven’t lived on a farm in a very long time! There has never been a responsibility for cows to milk or chickens to feed since leaving the farm many years ago. Nor were the eggs to gather. Not since I began this adult journey I am on.
However, I used these same guidelines to plan fun in the sun days for my family! What are you using for your guidelines for sun exposure times for your family?
Awareness Helps Make Change
How aware are you? Do you as the parent in your household really stop and think about what is important to make your family safe in the sun? Have you let others guide you with invitations for fun in the sun activities and times?
Are you ready to take some control of the hours your kids are in the sun? How far along are you in making yourself aware of the conditions that make it safe to spend time in the sun? Do you know if you are applying your sunscreen correctly? Is your sunscreen still safe to use, or has it expired since you bought it?
Will your sun block clothing still block the sun when wet? Or does the sun protection go away while wet? Do you know how to care for your families sun block clothing? Yes, things are changing and we have to change with it to keep our family safe.
Is Your Family Safe?
As you prepare for this years fun in the sun days, think back to how many times members of your family got too much sun. Which members did this happen too? Have you looked across a group of kids playing and realized that that little one with the tan lines from too much sun is your child?
That happened almost weekly for me as my kids were younger. When you are a baseball field away from your child, you notice that more easily. So I know that the problems that they are having with their adult skin started as very young children. And I as a parent was not on the job.
I don’t consider lack of knowledge as enough reason, but that is all I have. That is why they get bombarded with warnings now. Why I share so much of what I have found out with them.
You know better. Now how will you do better? How will you protect your family?
Plan Your Families Healthy Fun In The Sun Times
What easy thing can you do to improve their safety in the sun? Have you added some sun block clothing to your toolbox of sun protection tools to help them stay safe? Have you made sure your sunscreen is at least a 30 strength broad spectrum?
One whose “use by” dates have not passed. If your container only has a “sell by” date on it, please beware that they deteriorate in 2 years. The life of the formula is only 2 years. So pay attention.
Remember to reapply every 2 hours, or after getting in the water or if sweating a great deal. Your sunscreen is an important part of your protection from the sun.
Make sure your family members each have a sun hat with at least a 3 inch wide brim. Then each member needs a pair of good sunglasses, even the very young. A hat, sunglasses and a long sleeve sun blocking shirt along with sunscreen will keep them safer. A lip balm with sunscreen is also important.
Yes, I realize this is a change from how you as a family have protected from the sun in the past. Each year the Ozone get thinner and more sun gets to us here on earth. We now know how to protect ourselves. Awareness is important in the project of taking care of your families skin.
They are learning right along with you and with prompting will develop better habits. Know that some improvement is better than none. Don’t give up on them. They will learn and be grateful for healthier skin. Skin that missed the sunburn years.