Summer ‘18 in the UK is certainly looking to be one of the best since records began. Temperatures have smashed the normal averages and with no rain forecast for the next two weeks, hose pipe bans are being threatened in certain areas of the country. With the summer holidays just around the corner, staycations could be on the increase as families make the most of the British summer.
The best thing about a long range sunny forecast is that you can plan, almost unheard of in the UK! Theme parks, days out at the seaside, trips to the park, and visits to tourist attractions can all be arranged well in advance and with the added benefit of no rain you can safely leave your raincoats and umbrellas at home!
But the sun of course does bring other concerns. If you are out in the sun no matter if it’s for short or long periods, make sure you and your family’s skin is well protected against the suns harmful rays. Sun screen and UV protective clothing are a great way to keep your skin safe from burning.
SPF is a measure of the cream or lotions ability to prevent UVB from damaging the skin. For instance, if it takes 20 mins for your unprotected skin to start turning red, then sunscreen with a SPF of 15 should prevent your skin reddening 15 times longer. However, for all sunscreens it is recommended that you reapply frequently and especially after you have been swimming. SPF’s range from 2 being the lowest form of protection to 50+ being the highest.
UPF Clothing can be bought in different strengths. A top with a UPV of 50 will allow just 1/50th of the suns UV radiation through. Sunscreen labels should have a sun protection factor (SPF) figure on it to protect against UVB and at least a four-star UVA protection.
The best ways to avoid sunburn is to cover, cream up and stay out of the sun in the middle of the day when the sun is at it it’s hottest.
However, if the worst does happen and you end up with sunburn you should take immediate action to soothe your damaged skin. A cold shower or bath or even sponging your skin with cool water will help calm your skin and to help reduce the burning. Then apply a soothing after sun lotion to the affected areas.
High street stores sell a variety of different after sun lotions or if you like natural remedies there are some great homemade recipe’s which could help alleviate the symptoms. From vinegar to aloe vera and potato paste to witch hazel, there’s certainly a great range to choose from!
You can also take over the counter prescription drugs such as paracetamol and ibuprofen to help reduce the pain and inflammation. If you feel unwell, nauseous, or your skin becomes inflamed or blistered seek medical advice immediately by calling your doctor or calling 111. Alternatively visit the NHS website for further information: https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/sunburn/.