Sun Protection - CDC Advice
Some excellent advice from our friends at CDC about sun protection.
Sun Protection - AardvarkCompare
Our experience of this at AardvarkCompare comes from having lived in many hot countries. Each summer season, as the tourists arrived, us ‘locals’ would look on in amazement as our new visitors roasted in the sun. Sun protection is a basic part of life for most people who live in warm countries. Travelers should adopt the same strategies.
Cover up – a hat and a shirt. Use sunscreen. Stay in the shade. Avoid peak mid-day temperatures. Stay hydrated.
Simple advice that can make a holiday so much more enjoyable. Sun protection is not difficult.
Travelers spending time outdoors are exposed to the sun’s harmful ultraviolet (UV) rays, even on cloudy days. Travelers are at increased risk when traveling near the equator, during summer months, and at high altitudes. Reflection from the snow, sand, and water increases exposure, so consider sun safety during outdoor activities, including snow skiing, spending time at the beach, swimming, and sailing.
Sun Protection Strategies
- Stay in the shade, especially during midday hours (10 am to 4 pm).
- Wear clothing to protect exposed skin.
- Wear a hat with a wide brim to shade the face, head, ears, and neck.
- Drink plenty of fluids.
- Wear sunglasses that block both UVA and UVB
- Use SPF 15 or higher.
- Look for “blocks UVA and UVB” or “broad spectrum” on the label.
- Apply liberally (minimum of 1 oz) at least 20 minutes before sun exposure.
- Apply to all exposed skin. Remember to apply to ears, scalp, lips, neck, tops of feet, and backs of hands.
- Reapply at least every two hours and each time you get out of the water or sweat heavily.
- If you are also using bug spray, apply sunscreen first and bug spray second. Sunscreen may need to be reapplied more often.
- Throw away sunscreens after 1–2 years.
- Avoid indoor tanning. Getting a “base tan” before your vacation does damage to your skin and doesn’t protect you from sun exposure on your trip.
Sun Protection - Treating a Sunburn
Take aspirin, acetaminophen, or ibuprofen to relieve pain, headache, and fever. Drink plenty of water, and soothe burns with cool baths or by gently applying cool, wet cloths. Use a topical moisturizing cream or aloe to provide additional relief. Don’t go back into the sun until the burn has healed.
If skin blisters, lightly bandage or cover the area with gauze to prevent infection. Don’t break blisters (this slows healing and increases risk of infection). Apply antiseptic ointment if blisters break.
Seek medical attention if any of the following occurs:
- Severe sunburn, especially if it covers more than 15% of the body.
- Dehydration (see Hot Climate Travel).
- High fever (above 101 °F).
- Extreme pain that lasts more than 48 hours.