When it comes to your kids, you want them to be as safe as possible. This includes protecting them from possible complications later in their lives due to exposure to the sun. Australia has one of the highest rates of skin cancer in the world with every 2 out of 3 adults developing skin cancer before their 70th birthday.
The sun’s UV rays are a main cause of skin cancer, and early exposure to UV rays during childhood increases the chances of developing skin cancer later on in life. There are several things you can do to help alleviate this risk, especially with your children.
Tips to Make Your Backyard Sun Safe
Your kids typically spend a lot of time outdoors, especially with summer coming. There are several things you can do to reduce their exposure to the sun while they play outside this summer.
- Create Shade. One of the easier ways to reduce your kid’s exposure to the sun is to create a shaded environment for them to play in. You can use a combination of man-made and naturally occurring shade to shield your child from the UV rays. By putting a shade sail over your child’s play equipment, or using nature to create a beautiful shady play area, you reduce your child’s sun exposure by up to 75%. You can use things like the Golden Rain Tree, Beech Tree, Black Booyong, Native sarsparilla, and Pandorea jasminoides to create natural shade.
- Reduce Your Exposure by Shading Your Pool Area. Summer means lots of time in the pool, and this increases the overall exposure to UV rays by up to 30%. Most of those damaging rays will either penetrate through the water or hit the water and scatter so you are still at risk for sunburn when swimming. It may take as little as 15 minutes to get sunburned when your skin is exposed, and investing in a shade sail or a quality waterproof sunscreen can help to reduce the risk of sunburn. Any sunburned skin has an increased risk of developing skin cancer later in life. You want to prevent this from happening to your children whilst they’re out playing in the pool.
- Slip, Slop, Slap. The slip, slop, slap method is an easy and popular method to prevent sunburn and UV exposure, especially with young children. Before your child goes outside in the sun, slip on some sun-protective clothing and cover as much of their skin as possible. Slop on quality SPF30 or higher broad-spectrum and water-resistant sunscreen. Finally, slap on a broad-brimmed hat to protect their faces, eyes, ears, and necks.
So before you send your child out to play this summer, take some steps to decrease their exposure to the sun. Creating shade, shading your pool area, and using the slip, slop, slap method can all lead to many long-term health benefits. However, if you notice an odd mole when you’re checking your child over, or you think that they would benefit from a skin check, contact My Skin Centre. There are nine convenient clinics throughout Perth and the South West to choose from. Keep your child healthy, happy, and safe this summer by using early prevention methods; they’ll thank you later.