Summer Tips

Lazy days at the pool or beach are warm weather rituals for many families. But if you’re tempted to let your child play outdoors for even a few minutes without the proper sun protection, you’re taking an unhealthy risk.

“It only takes one severe sunburn to potentially double your child’s chances of getting melanoma later in life,” says Andrea Cambio, MD, FAAD, a board-certified pediatric dermatologist. “We really need to buckle down and protect our young.”

Slather on the Sunscreen – No Exceptions

Ultraviolet sunlight damages the skin and can lead to wrinkles and cancers later on.

Always put sunscreen on your child before going outside. We like to make a fun game out of it. Teach your child to spell BEENS to help you remember to cover often-forgotten spots: Back of knees, Ears, Eye area, Neck, and Scalp.

Apply sunscreen 15 to 30 minutes before going outside. Then reapply every 2 hours, or sooner if your child has been swimming. Water-resistant sunscreen wears off — check the label to see how soon you’ll need to reapply.

  • Opt for a sunscreen with a sun protection factor (SPF) of 30 or higher.
  • Make sure it’s labeled “broad spectrum,” which means it blocks both UVA and UVB  sunlight.
  • Sunscreen sticks are best for the face because they are less likely to drip.

Did you know: the Skin Cancer Foundation Recommends SunGuard, a laundry additive that contains a sunscreen called Tinosorb FD. Toss it in the wash, and your clothes instantly get a UPF of 30. The protection lasts about 20 washings. (disclaimer..I haven’t really researched this for the dangers…you should and then let me know if it’s a good idea)

Remember; We want sunscreen and hats to be second nature to them when they go out. Practice good habits together. Being a role model is vital to helping your kids establish healthy sun habits. If they see you skipping the sunscreen and hat and then working on your tan, changes are they’ll want to skip these items also. So cover up head to toe and party on dudes!