Your backyard pool offers plenty of opportunities for family enjoyment, easy entertainment, and physical activity! Unfortunately, there may be some safety hazards associated with it. At the top of the list of safety concerns is drowning. A further concern, though, that may become more common if you spend much time outside, is risky sun exposure from UV rays. Due to their thinner and more sensitive skin, young children are at an even greater risk than adults.
Even though sunburn is painful, it is not the only problem, because UV radiation can also result over the long term in skin cancer and can lead to premature aging of the skin. If this shocks you, you might be like the majority of parents, who unknowingly believe a number of sunscreen myths, according to research by Dr. Sarah DeHaan from the University of Michigan.
Let’s go over some of the widely believed misconceptions:
Myth 1: Cloudy Days Are Freebies
Even parents who are very careful to apply sunscreen to their children on sunny days frequently forget to do so when the skies are overcast with clouds. Did you realize that clouds don’t actually completely shield UV rays? While the dangerous UVA rays are reduced to some extent, the reduction is far from being complete; these powerful UVA rays still can penetrate cloud layers and then can bounce off reflective surfaces (and this is exactly what makes individuals who are in or near water considerably more prone to sun damage).
Myth 2: A Tan or Dark Skin Tone Protects You from the Sun
Darker skin does, as many people are aware, naturally contain more pigment, or melanin, which filters out some UV rays. Any shade of skin, however, can become burned, albeit those with less melanin will be more susceptible. According to the American Cancer Society, people with darker skin tones are actually more likely to develop skin cancer. Black people, in particular, are more likely to discover they have skin cancer when it is more advanced, which makes treatment more challenging and less effective. As a result, their survival rate is much worse (24% lower over a 5-year period).
Myth 3: Waterproof Sunscreen Does What It Says on the Label
Sunscreen must demonstrate that it remains effective for 40–80 minutes after a recipient swims or perspires in order to have the designation “water resistant.” But first, take note that the duration is under 1.5 hours! Also keep in mind that when a person is completely submerged in water, any product inevitably will eventually wash off. These factors together highlight how crucial it is to frequently reapply sunscreen, especially for young children who are busy and energetic.
We’ll examine a few more sun safety fallacies in the following article in this series. This summer, you’ll be able to protect your family and thoroughly enjoy your outside area and fantastic pool the more well informed you are about this crucial subject.
Continue reading with Part 2.
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