The bright, shining sun over serene, sandy beaches is part of the reason that the Paradise Coast has earned its name and is one of the desirable features that draws so many people to Southwest Florida. In order to stay safe while maximizing your enjoyment of those sunny days, it's important to keep sun safety in mind. The last full week of May each year is National Safe Sun Week, providing the perfect excuse to brush up on safe habits before summer starts. Our real estate agents have some practical tips sourced from medical experts to help you stay safe while enjoying fun in the sun this year.
The CDC provides extensive guidance on sun safety. By taking proactive steps to protect yourself from the sun, you can reduce the risk of skin cancer, which is the most common form of cancer in the United States.
- Know When the Sun is at its Strongest
Sun safety starts with knowing what times of day the sun is at its strongest so that you can protect yourself appropriately. Typically, the sun's UV rays are at their strongest from 10:00 AM to 4:00 PM, though those times can vary slightly depending on the time of year and your exact location.
Additionally, you can check the UV index, which is available online and in many weather apps, to find out how strong the sun's UV rays are expected to be on any given day. If the UV index where you're located is higher than 3, it's important to take steps to protect your skin from the sun's rays.
- Cloudy Days Still Carry Risk
One of the reasons that it's wise to check the UV index is that the sun's rays can still be strong, even if the sun is not shining brightly in the sky. Sun damage can still occur on cloudy or cool days, especially if you're spending time near the water, sand, or any other reflective surface.
- Seek Shade During the Strongest UV Hours
Sometimes, the old-fashioned tips are still the most effective. One of the best ways to protect yourself from the sun during the hours when UV rays are the strongest is simply to find a shady spot. If you're planning to spend a full day at the beach, be sure to bring a beach umbrella to protect yourself from UV rays. While it isn't a substitute for sunscreen or appropriately protective clothing, shade is still a great place to start for sun safety.
- Dress for (Sun Safety) Success
Shade won't always be available, and even if you're relaxing in a shady spot, you will still want to take additional steps for sun safety. Wearing clothing that covers and protects your skin is a great way to stay safe on sunny days. The CDC recommends wearing clothing made from tightly woven fabric or choosing clothing that has been certified for UV protection. Wearing a wide-brimmed hat that protects your face, ears, and the back of your neck is also recommended.
- Choose the Right Sunscreen
The CDC suggests using a broad-spectrum sunscreen with an SPF of at least 15 when you're planning to be outside on sunny days. You will want to reapply sunscreen every two hours that you're outside, or sooner if you spend time in the water after the initial application. Remember that sunscreen works best when used in conjunction with the other sun safety tips that we've mentioned above.
- Don't Forget to Protect Your Eyes
The CDC also recommends protecting your eyes from UV rays and sun damage that can cause cataracts. Choosing a pair of sunglasses that protects from both UVA and UVB rays will provide your eyes with the best protection.
You can enjoy fun in the sun all year long when you own a home in Southwest Florida. Our local team is here to help with Naples homes for sale and all of your real estate needs. Contact us to buy and sell homes throughout the Naples, FL, area.