Summertime is here again and most of us are eager to get back out into the sun especially after a long winter. However, before you and your family start all of those outdoor activities you’ve been waiting on it is important that you all know the risks of playing in the sun. The sun comes with harmful side effects if you are exposed to it for too long!

Being outside is important for mental health as well as physical health. The most frequent injury from the sun is sunburn. Sunburn is due to too much exposure form the suns UV rays that are full of radiation. Our skin can only handle the radiation up until a certain point, and then you will start to burn.  Sunburn should be taken seriously if you have repeat exposure to sunburn over time you can develop melanoma and other skin-damaging complications! There are many other things you should look out for when playing outside this summer as well!

Always be near some water!

Dehydration becomes a significant health risk when you are outside for a prolonged period of time on a hot, sunny day. The best way to avoid dehydration is to make sure you have the correct amount of water on you for your group. When we are active our bodies use up water that we have stored inside of us. This is the bodies way of trying to keep our temperature down so we do not overheat. However, if we lose enough water then we will become dehydrated. Dehydration can be fixed simply by drinking every time you feel thirsty. Thirst is the bodies way of telling you to get more water in your body because you are running low.

Always bring sunscreen

If you are going to be outside for a long period of time in the sun it is important to bring sunscreen. As discussed before the sun can burn us and that can result in some pretty nasty side effects. Also, carry SPF 30 or higher! Anything under SPF 30 has a very high chance of not protecting you very well from the sun! You should be applying sunblock every 2-3 hours when you are outside. If you are in and out of the water then you should be reapplying every time you come out.

Wear protective clothing

If you are going outside in the sun another good way to stop sunburn is to wear protective clothing! Wearing hats, sunglasses, or dry-wick shirts that keep you warm are great ways to stay cool in the summer, as well as prevent you from getting a sunburn!

Make sure to keep these tips in mind whenever you are out enjoying the great summer weather!