Parenting

Four Steps to Keep Kids Safe in the Sun

Updated: July 21, 2022

By Sarah Scribner, Pretzel Kids content intern

We all know that wearing sunscreen and protective clothing is important when you go out in the sun – not just for kids but for you as well. Nonetheless, it’s easy to forget to put on more sunscreen or your floppy hat when you’re at the beach, practicing yoga outside, or just hanging out with friends in your yard.

Indeed, this may sound familiar to you: In the “heat” of the moment, you soak up too many rays and you end up with a sunburn. Here at Pretzel Kids yoga we’d like to help you avoid this painful situation. So, to keep kids safe in the sun, try following these 4 steps.

Four Steps to Keep Kids Safe in the Sun

1. Wear Protective Clothing

When taking a walk outside or doing yoga outdoors, your family should carefully consider clothing choices. Tank tops and shorts are perfect for staying cool, but they don’t necessarily provide full coverage under the sun. Instead, long pants, hats, and long-sleeved shirts are wise options, especially if they are black in color –– white-colored clothing reflects the sun’s light back towards the body. If you can’t make a black outfit work or it’s too hot out to wear black, then choose any dark-colored clothing pieces, including navy pants or brown shirts. You can also trying buying clothing embedded with sun protection.

2. wear sunglasses

Although some sunglasses can be expensive, others are quite affordable and provide almost 100% protection from UV rays. UV rays can have damaging effects on the eyes – in some cases causing cataracts if you don’t use proper protection. Plus, putting on your favorite pair of sunglasses can greatly decrease your chances of facing serious damage. According to the National Eye Institute, 20% of cataract cases in the last year were direct results of UV radiation exposure. So, be sure to look for glasses with 99-100% UV protection.

3. Avoid Tanning to Keep Kids Safe in the sun

Every form of tanning, whether it be indoors, poolside, or beachside, is potentially harmful. Tanning and too much sun exposure can lead to serious skin damage or worse. In fact, according to Women’s Health, skin cancer is the most common cancer diagnosed in the United States and putting your body under an intense amount of radiation for extended periods of time can increase your risk of skin cancer.

Therefore, to prevent extended time in the sun, you should consider limiting your sun intake, especially between 10am and 4pm – the prime heat times. If you do go to the beach or spend long days outdoors, remember to wear lots of sunscreen and protective clothing, as well as take breaks indoors or under the shade.

4. properly apply sunscreen

Although spray sunscreens are easier to apply than creams, the old-fashioned lotions are the most effective types of sunscreens. Why? You can more readily apply an even coat without missing areas.

Also, make sure you apply a solid coat to the most easily overlooked areas – the backs of your legs and back. 

The Skin Cancer Foundation suggests using sunscreens with Sun Protection Factor (SPF) 15 or higher, as they do the best job at blocking radiation. The SPF measures the sunscreen’s ability to protect your skin from UVB rays and the higher the levels of SPF, the better protection you’ll have from the sun’s harmful rays. The Skin Cancer Foundation also encourages users to apply sunscreen 30 minutes before embarking on an adventure under the sun, as well as carefully reapplying it every two hours. Reapplication is essential if you want to ensure that you are protecting your skin from the sun at all times.  

keep kids safe in the sun

Make your health a priority

By following these tips from Pretzel Kids yoga, you and your family can take proactive measures to enjoy activities in the sun – without worrying about health threats or painful sunburns.

Plus, why not plan a last summer excursion to the beach the right way? Just be sure to pack plenty of sunscreen, as well as healthy snacks and water.

About Sarah

Sarah Scribner is a content writer and social media intern at Pretzel Kids.

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