The sun’s out and the days are long, enticing us to stay outside and enjoy the sunrays. When you’re rushing around with your toddler outside, it may be easy to forget that they need to be protected from the UV rays as well!
Ever wanted to know what the numbers mean on sunscreen? SPF stands for Sun Protection Factor and the numbers we see next to that (15, 30, 50, etc.) are actually numbers that you multiply with the number of minutes it takes to burn without sunscreen on. For example, if it takes your skin about 20 minutes to burn without wearing any sunscreen, then if you use a sunscreen with SPF 15, you can essentially stay in the sun for 20 x 15 = 300 minutes.
For kids, it is best to buy sunscreen with a factor of 30 to 50, keeping in mind when to reapply. Make sure to carefully follow instructions on the labels.
Look for the term “broad spectrum” which blocks against UVA and UVB rays, both of which can cause skin damage and skin cancer.
If you are considering a spray format, keep in mind that many young children may inhale quite a bit and may not understand when to hold their breath when they are getting sprayed. It may irritate their throats when they inhale. Also, with sprays, it may be easy to miss spots on their bodies. Lotion formats tend to work better for coverage.
Don’t forget to reapply often, especially if they are swimming or playing in water. Also, sweat will cause sunscreen to come off their skin if it’s extremely hot, so be sure to reapply often if you’re out and about in the sun.
In addition to wearing sunscreen, hats and sunglasses are also great for sun protection. And if the weather is really hot, spend some time indoors or under shade and hydrate often.
Hope you’re enjoying the glorious days of summer!
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