Do you know Why You Should Avoid UV Rays Today? UV Ray danger has not been on my radar for very long. How about you?
Are you more aware of Why You Should Avoid UV Rays Today? Let’s talk about UV rays. Just a refresher here, if you will. There are 3 kinds of UV rays:
UVA Rays are the strongest and do the most damage the quickest.
These UV rays are damaging to your skin, and your eyes and can cause skin cancer. These are the ones we must protect ourselves from.
Hello, I’m Sami Williams, and I have been in the battle against skin cancer for over four decades. My struggles, marked by the frustrations of recurring skin issues and the challenges of less-than-desirable surgical outcomes, have fueled a passion for sun safety that extends through generations.
UV Rays Will Be There Even If You Ignore Them
Sunscreen, sunglasses, hats, and protective clothing should all play a part in your protection from the sun. Don’t ignore the danger the Ultra Violet Rays will do.
Next, we must all develop a great love for shade trees, umbrellas, and any kind of shade to break the direct sun.
This is a habit I have, standing wherever I start my visit or chore. Whatever is going on outside that has me out in the bright sun.
I can do myself some real favors by looking around at what is available to break the sun.
Often there is a tree, a building, or an awning. I just haven’t developed the habit of looking for shade. By wearing a sun hat, sunglasses, and a sun blocking shirt, and stepping into some sort of shade area, the fun in the sun days would hold less damage!
I am not living in the treeless areas we lived in for so long, and shade is an option for us here in central Texas, most of the time. There are just some habits that I am unaware of that are holding me back.
Now as I am becoming aware, I can do a better job. Do a better job of helping my family members stay protected from the sun and the damage that can happen to their skin.
UV Rays are a part of my everyday. It is up to me to be aware and protect myself from the early aging UVA rays. Even if I am not getting sunburned, I am receiving damage from the UVA rays. Looking older before I have to is not in my game plan.
UVB Not To Be Forgotten
I started this section with UVA ray information, and because it is so sneaky and damaging, I am leery that I have covered all the ways those rays can get to my skin.
Now, let’s consider the next part of a sun ray, the UVB Rays
These are the medium rays in the overall sun’s ray makeup. They will do some of the same damage that UVA rays can.
The sunburn that the UVB causes will take a few minutes longer than the damage of early aging takes. So if the sun has reached your skin enough to cause a sunburn, it has done a number on all those parts of your skin that keep you looking young and healthy.
So, while you don’t feel the damage of UVA on your skin like you can feel the heat from UVB, it is there. Sometimes you will have UVA without UVB.
However, you will always have UVA when you have UVB. We just must alert ourselves to be aware. If it is daylight, there are Ultra Violet Rays. There are times they are more dangerous than other times.
You will get a full dose of the early aging effect when there is some cloud cover, or you are getting reflected sun.
Did you spend the day in a boat under a shade, and still have signs of sunburn? This is the sun’s rays bouncing off the water, and reaching you in another way.
Winter sports lovers often have to be on guard for this kind of sun exposure. Sun reflecting off the snow is also dangerous and causes damage.
With UVB rays, your location in the world plays a part in the reason you can be caught off guard. Do you come from my part of the world, accustomed to direct sun many hours of the day?
Do you think that because you wore a sun hat while in the indirect sun, you are safe? Not necessarily so.
Don’t Forget The UVC Rays
The UVC Ray is generally absorbed and deflected by the earth’s atmosphere and is not so much a worry most of the time.
Ultra Violet C (UVC) radiation is the highest energy portion of the UV radiation spectrum.
UVC radiation from the sun does not normally reach the earth’s surface because it is blocked by the ozone layer in the atmosphere. However, very thin places in the ozone layer are showing up in Australia, as well as other sunny places here in the US. With thinner ozone, more UVC can get through.
The most damage caused to your skin is in the form of more intense damage from UVA and UVB. The other occurs because it is usually accidental when you are exposed. Overexposure results from not being aware that you are getting the sun.
Generally, the only way that humans can be exposed to UVC radiation is from an artificial source like a lamp or laser, think of tanning salons and lights used for sanitation. I had a sterilizer that I used for brushes and combs while I had my hair salons.
With all 3 of these dangerous rays, sunscreen is important. Cover up your skin. Wearing sun blocking clothing is a great defense against the sun being able to reach your skin. Help slow your skin aging. As well as decrease your risk for skin cancer.
A Healthy Tan
Next, let’s think about this “healthy tan” idea we have grown to accept as truth.
In the medical world, there is no such thing as a “safe tan.” Before you argue that you have always heard that some tan is good for you, think about it.
If you are getting a little browner from sun exposure, it happens because the body is defending itself. Your body is trying to defend itself from damage from the sun. Do you tan?
The sun sends energy to the Earth in several ways. There is the light that you can see. Also, there is the heat that you feel. Another way the sun sends us energy is through the UV rays that we can’t see or feel.
Fortunately, the atmosphere helps deflect some of the UV ray strength as it shines through. However, with repeated exposure to this UV part of the sun’s system, there will be some damage.
How many sunburns have you accidentally gotten?
A Little Or A Lot
Here is where most of us get confused.
Yes, we do need a bit of exposure to the sun for our bodies to make vitamin D. Too much exposure will start damaging your skin. Using common sense is the main control factor.
However, few of us seem to have much “common sense” when we get out in the sun and are enjoying ourselves. Time passes too fast.
When I step out of the house to water the plants on the front and back porches, I am very aware of a few minutes of exposure.
However, sitting and visiting with friends and family at a sports event, we hardly realize the hours. Even on cloudy days, after adding freckles and deep lines to my face. I am old enough that this is not good.
When you see a “tan” line be aware that this is your skin’s self-defense mechanism. It is producing melanin to protect itself. Your body is trying to keep the sun from damaging your skin.
Your body is reacting in the proper way to help protect from the sun. When producing the darker coloring, your body is in the middle of an attempt to cover up and protect your skin.
Your body can’t keep up with excess exposure. You will sunburn your skin.
Get out of the direct sun. Avoid being out between 10 AM and 4 PM. Do some preventative work by taking care of your skin by adding some sun blocking clothing and sunscreen.
Sun Blocking Clothing To Protect Yourself From The Ultra Violet Rays Of The Sun
Protecting yourself from UV Rays is a continuous effort. Fortunately, this will soon become automatic.
A sun blocking clothing wardrobe is the easiest way to protect your skin. While sun blocking clothing and sunscreen are what we have to work with, for outside skin protection, your awareness of when to rely on what is equally important.
I think we have all used the “but sunscreen feels so gross when you are already hot and sweaty.” Yes, you are right, it does feel unpleasant. However, it feels better than sun-damaged skin.
Using a sun hat will keep the sun off your head, face, and neck. This is where skin cancer usually shows up first. A sun hat will work wonders by itself, but when you add a layer of sunscreen, you are adding insurance for skin protection.
In our family, we use the spray on our face, ears, and neck when we are wearing our sun hats. The SPF 50 does a great job for us. I don’t know that a spray-on sunscreen is the best choice, but it is one we will use. You do have to think these things through for yourself, and your life.
With my sun hat, sunglasses, and loose-fitting long sleeve sun blocking shirt, I stay protected. When pushing wheelbarrows of leaves and trash from the trees I take breaks on the porch. I don’t have the energy to go too long without a break so I know I am protecting my skin more.
One thing that I would share in warning about spray-on sunscreen? It will run into your eyes if you sweat much. I usually wear a bandana tied around my head to catch the sweat. The reason I mention this is because of your kids. Make sure they have a way to keep the sweat out of their eyes.
Keeping a watch for the UV rays damage that can happen is important for you and your family. If you don’t do it, who will?
Higher Sunburn Risk?
Do you and your family have a higher sunburn risk? Are there members of your family who have green or blue eyes? Strawberry blonde hair? Light-colored skin that freckles easily? Sunburns quickly?
When you or your family falls at a higher risk having long pants is important as well. Staying covered in the sun will be the safest way to keep your skin from too much sun. Don’t allow yourself to get sunburned. For people with higher risks, it happens so quickly.
Sami’s Take On Why We Should Avoid UV Rays Today
The risk of skin cancer is too great to ignore the sun. By delaying skin protection for you and your family you are allowing some bad habits to take root. Do you think it is hard to make a change now? How will next week be better or easier?
Pay attention, and allow your awareness of the dangers of UV rays to grow and help you protect your skin, as well as that of your family.
Enjoy your fun in the sun-times, just do so responsibly. Use some caution and skin protection to ensure a healthy fun time for all.
Wear your sun hat. Keep your sunglasses on! Wear your sun blocking shirt. Stay healthy and sunburn-free!