Skin Care Tips for Memorial Day

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Memorial Day is right around the corner. It’s been a while since we all have enjoyed an outdoors summer-like holiday. With those holidays comes some inherent hazards, least of which is being careful not to burn under the sun’s rays. We at Concorde want our students and faculty to enjoy the holiday safely, so we thought we’d refresh your health care awareness by pointing out some skin care tips for staying safe under the summer sun.

We sought the counsel of Jacqueline Brown, RN, MSN, CWN, Director of Nursing Education at Concorde’s campus in Memphis, Tenn. and a skin-care expert, to provide us with some guidance. Following is what she had to say.

Health care awareness before stepping outside

“Before you step outside, protect your skin from the sun’s damaging ultraviolet (UV) rays,” Brown wrote in an email.

  • Always use a broad spectrum sunscreen with a minimum of 30 SPF (Sun Protection Factor), which protects the skin from UVB and UVA rays.
  • Be sure to apply sunscreen 15-30 minutes prior to sun exposure.
  • If you swim, sweat or are outdoors for a long period of time, reapply sunscreen every two hours. Even sunscreen that is water resistant can lose its effectiveness after a period of time.
  • Dermatologists suggest wearing sunscreen on a daily basis, especially when your clothing doesn’t cover your skin, like on the face, neck, ears and hand.
  • Remember, sunscreen isn’t just for sunny days. The sun’s ultraviolet rays can penetrate up to approximately 80 percent on a cloudy day.

Health care awareness for going out on the holiday

When going out for the holiday, remember to wear the following:

  • Wide-brimmed hats help shade the face, neck and ears. It also protects the scalp from harmful rays. Baseball caps are good, but not as good as wide-brimmed hats because they don’t protect the ears.
  • Wear light-weight sun protective clothing. Long sleeves and long pants help protect the skin and swim cover-ups are another way to keep the sunburns at bay when you are chilling by the pool or on the beach.
  • Take advantage of shade areas whenever possible. The sun’s UV rays are the most intense between 10 a.m. and 4 p.m.
  • Include sunglasses to protect the eyes from UV rays. The more of the eyes you can cover, the less the intensity of light will reach the back of the eye. To prevent eye damage from the sun, choose eyewear with UV 400 protection.
  • People often forget to include lip protection when out in the sun for an extended period. Covering and protecting the lips with SPF 30 or higher sunscreen is equally important. There even is lipstick available with SPF protection.

Remember health care awareness for small children

  • Shield children from UV damage by applying sunscreen. Wear protective clothing, lip protection and sunglasses.
  • Babies younger than six months should be kept out of the sun. If they are outdoors, a wide-brimmed hat, protective clothing and sunglasses are recommended. Be sure to ask your pediatrician before using sunscreen on an infant, as products have not yet been tested on them.

There you have it. By following these few health care awareness tidbits, you can go outside and enjoy the unofficial start of summer. Have a great Memorial Day weekend!

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