It’s that time of year again – holiday time! Flights and accommodation are booked, new summer outfits are packed and ready to go. Toiletries packed. Travel documents checked and packed. You’re looking forward to relaxing and enjoying some wonderful sunshine.

Photograph courtesy of Momomdo

But wait! What about sunscreen?

If you’re coming to Fethiye for your holiday there’s one thing you can be sure of…it’s going to be hot! In July and August the temperatures can soar to the mid forties and higher. Hot enough to fry that proverbial egg! Imagine what that heat can do to your skin!

All too often in the summer, we see visitors looking like boiled lobsters!

 

Sun Awareness Week

This week is Sun Awareness Week so it seems like a good time to talk about safety in the sun to help you avoid looking (and feeling) like the aforementioned lobster.

According to a survey carried out by the British Association of Dermatologists to mark Sun Awareness Week (8th-14th May), 80 per cent of people don’t apply sunscreen before going out in the sun and then shortly afterwards. This is the approach recommended for three key reasons: to make sure that the product is fully absorbed before skin is exposed to sun, to help reduce the chances of areas of skin being missed, and to ensure a thick enough layer is applied.

The survey also found that 70 per cent of people fail to reapply sunscreen every two hours as recommended.

Sun safety tips

Nobody wants to spend the entire summer indoors and some sunshine can be good for you. Sunshine helps the body to create vitamin D and gives you a feeling of general wellbeing too. However, all too often we over-do our sun exposure which can lead to a range of skin problems, the most serious of which include skin cancer.

Follow these sun safety tips to make sure you don’t ruin your holiday and put your health at risk.

Wear a high factor sunscreen

Using a broad spectrum (UVA/UVB) sunscreen with a Sun Protection Factor (SPF) of 15 or higher every day is crucial. For extended outdoor activity, use a water-resistant, broad spectrum sunscreen with an SPF of 30 or higher.

SPF numbers start at 2 and have just recently reached 70. To figure out how long you can stay in the sun with a given SPF, use this equation:

Minutes to burn without sunscreen x SPF number = maximum sun exposure time

For example, if you burn after 10 minutes of sun exposure, an SPF of 15 will allow you to be in the sun for up to 150 minutes without burning (as long as you follow the directions for application).

Click here to read the Which article on SPF, UVA, UVB: sun creams explained

Reapply sunscreen every two hours – more often if you swim, shower or sweat and rub your skin dry. Waterproof or water resistant sunscreens will resist removal more than other sunscreens but still need reapplication to maintain their optimum SPF value.

Make every day a hat day

Make sure everyone in your family wears a hat to protect the face, head and the back of the neck.

Enjoy some time in the shade

Stay in the shade when the sun is at its hottest – between 11:am and 3:00pm.

If you must be out when the sun is at it’s hottest, wear a long sleeved top or shirt. Cover up!

Stay alert to ensure you do not burn

Don’t fall asleep in the full sun. You may wake up burnt to a crisp.

Çalış Beach is popular for the cooling breeze that blows from the sea in the afternoon. BEWARE!  You won’t feel yourself burning so make sure you reapply your sunscreen regularly.

A breezy July afternoon at Çalış Beach

Drink water

In the hot sun you can experience some level of dehydration after about 10 mins. Drink 500ml of water for every half hour you spend sunbathing.

What about the children?

Young, sensitive skin is especially vulnerable, always protect your child from those harmful rays.

Sunscreen should not be used on children under the age of six months, as these young children can get very good sun protection with sun protective prams, hoods, clothes, blankets and umbrellas. Keep your little one in the shade where possible.

From the age of six months onwards babies can be protected with sunscreens in addition to the above protective measures. Use sunscreens that are labelled as formulated for children.

Protect your children from the sun

Click here to read Sun Care 101: The Basics of Sun Safety for Kids

Click here to read the Sunscreen and sun safety factsheet (© British Association of Dermatologists 2013)

Finally…

If you’re in the sun and you feel like you’re burning…it’s because you are!

Practice safety in the sun and have a great holiday!

 

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