Sun being a source of vitamin D is essential for the regulation of calcium and phosphorus in our body which further improves our bone health and retains its strength. But do you know, excessive exposure to sun rays can have adverse effects on one’s body? The harmful UV rays when comes in contact can considerably damage our eyes and lead to several skin problems like sunburns, rashes, wrinkles, premature aging, and skin cancer in extreme cases. Though the skin cancer rates are extremely low in India compared to other countries, nevertheless, we are supposed to take every precaution or else get ready to bear the repercussions.
There are three types of UV or Ultraviolet radiation differentiated as per their wavelength and energy - ultraviolet A (UVA), ultraviolet B (UVB), and ultraviolet C (UVC). The higher the wavelength of UV rays the more harmful it is. Since UVA and UVB have a much longer wavelength than UVC, they are far more detrimental to our bodies.
Now we are well aware of what causes the alteration in our skin and our internal and external system. Following we have shared some ways, you can include in your everyday life to cope up and protect yourself from scorching sun rays.
● Sunscreen is a must
➔ Everyday application of sunscreen is indispensable for the protection from UV rays as it blocks the rays from penetrating deep in the dermis hence preventing sunburn. There is this Sun Protection Factor or SPF which needs to be looked upon before buying any sunscreen. It is recommended to go for a broad-spectrum sunscreen with SPF higher than 30. Higher the SPF higher the protection.
➔ You can go with NIVEA Sun Lotion, SPF 30, with UVA & UVB Protection, Lakme Sun Expert SPF 50, Mama Earth Ultra Light Indian Sunscreen with SPF 50, Good Vibe’s UVA and UVB Protection Broad Spectrum Sunscreen with SPF 30, and Neutrogena Ultra Sheer lotion with SPF 50.
➔ Apply it gently all over your face, neck, and other exposed parts 30 minutes before going outdoors, and then reapply after every 2 hours. Apply it even if you are indoors.
➔ Use lip balms with an SPF of 30 or higher to prevent your lips from getting burned. Seba Med Lip Defense with SPF 30, Himalaya Sun Protect Orange Lip Care, Nivea Smoothness Lip Care with SPF 15, and VLCC Lovable Lips are a good go.
● Escape the high-intensity period
➔ The rays from the sun are strongest from 10:00 am to 04:00 pm therefore one should avoid going outdoors during peak hours. Even if it is winters or cloudy weather we must limit the exposure to the sun because the UVA and UVB can’t be blocked by mere clouds therefore we must seek shade whenever possible.
➔ Resist yourself from carrying babies younger than 6 months in intense heat or else cover them completely as their skin is most sensitive and prone to damage.
● Your clothing can be a righteous help
➔ Dark color clothes are preferred while going outside as they absorb all the heat and do not allow it to penetrate through our skin. Though it’s a bit hard to wear dark clothes in summers because of its absorbing property making us feel even hotter.
➔ Wear long-sleeved clothes like T-shirts, shirts, pants, and trousers to protect hands and legs from getting tanned.
➔ Firmly woven fabric like denim, satin, poplin, etc must be worn rather than loosely woven as they restrict the UV rays from seeping deep under our skin.
➔ Go with clothes with a higher UPF (40-50) (Ultraviolet protection factor) that blocks up to 98% of UV rays.
● Carrying accessories is the coolest way to get rid of the harmful rays
➔ Style some cool sunglasses with your attire that can absorb 98% - 100% UV rays consequently preventing your eyes from any damage. (carrying a pair of normal sunglasses is futile)
➔ Buy yourself a classic hat with a wide brim that’ll provide shade protecting your head, face, neck, and ears. (You are going to rock this look)
➔ Don’t forget to carry an umbrella in fiery weather.
● Increase intake of foods with antioxidant properties
➔ Antioxidants are substances found in fruits and vegetables that prevent damage to cells or at least slows down the process.
➔ Green leafy vegetables (spinach, kale, broccoli, etc), fruits (berries, oranges, papaya, watermelon, tomato, etc), seeds (chia seeds, flax seeds, pumpkin seeds, sunflower seeds, etc) are all loaded with antioxidants and should be consumed in a higher amount during midday. If you have sunburn already, this will provide relief and will repair the cells.
How to treat if you’ve already had it
What if you are already sunburned? Well, you still have to follow the above measures to protect yourself from further exposure to harmful UV rays. Look, if the burn is intense, your skin is all red and itchy, or blisters are popping out that are extremely painful, immediately seek a certified dermatologist because the home remedies won’t work in this case.
If you have a mild sunburn it can be treated at home all by itself. Following are some tips you can apply to get rid of the same:
- Apply cucumber or aloe vera on the affected area to get instant Blend them in a jar to form a paste or extract its juice, store it in the refrigerator and use at regular intervals.
- Cold showers and cold compress is a miraculous way to soothe your sunburnt
Apply moisturizer post-shower to hydrate it externally.
- Keeping your body hydrated is also very significant while curing sunburn because our body loses various essential fluids when exposed to sun
- Consume fruits and vegetables with high antioxidant
- An oatmeal bath instantaneously provides relief from
Sunburn seems to be a very normal thing but when neglected for a long time can lead to acute disease like skin cancer which when further neglected can lead to death. Skin cancer rates are considerably higher in Australia and New Zealand. Therefore one must take every precaution to protect themselves from the UV rays. Sun is a boon for our existence but overexposure to it can be fatal.