Stay Sun Safe This Summer
Published on July 01, 2021
Weld County, CO — While some exposure to sunlight can be enjoyable, too much can be dangerous. Overexposure to ultraviolet (UV) radiation from the sun can result in a painful sunburn. It can also lead to more serious health problems, including skin cancer, premature aging of the skin, cataracts and other eye damage, and immune system suppression. Children are particularly at risk.
Most people are not aware that skin cancer, while largely preventable, is the most common form of cancer in the United States. By following some simple steps, you can still enjoy your time in the sun and protect yourself from overexposure. The Weld County Department of Public Health and Environment (WCDPHE) recommends these action steps to help you and your family be “Sun Wise.”
- Do Not Burn
- Sunburns significantly increase one’s lifetime risk of developing skin cancer, especially in children.
- Avoid Sun Tanning and Tanning Beds
- UV light from tanning beds and the sun causes skin cancer and wrinkling.
- Generously Apply Sunscreen
- Use about one ounce of sunscreen to cover all exposed skin 20 minutes before going outside. Sunscreen should have a Sun Protection Factor (SPF) of at least 15. Reapply every two hours, even on cloudy days, and after swimming or sweating.
- Wear Protective Clothing
- Wear protective clothing, such as a long-sleeved shirt, pants, a wide-brimmed hat, and sunglasses, when possible.
- Seek Shade
- Seek shade when possible and remember that the sun’s UV rays are strongest between 10:00 a.m. and 4:00 p.m.
- Use Extra Caution Near Water, Snow, and Sand
- Water, snow, and sand reflect the damaging rays of the sun, which can increase your chance of sunburn.
- Check the UV Index
- The UV Index provides important information to help you plan your outdoor activities in ways that prevent sun overexposure. The UV Index forecast is issued daily by the National Weather Service and the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).