The sun is essential to life. However, you must expose yourself to it safely. Repeated and excessive exposure to the sun’s ultraviolet (UV) rays can:
Tanning is a sign that the skin has sustained deep cellular damage. It is not recommended to tan, whether under the sun or with artificial tanning lamps.
Check the UV Index to find out the intensity of the sun’s UV rays when planning your outdoor activities. The greater the UV Index, the stronger the UV rays and the more you should be protected. You can get daily UV Index by checking local weather forecasts.
Some people are more sensitive to UV rays because they naturally have less melanin in their skin. Melanin is a black pigment that absorbs UV rays and protects the skin.
People most at risk of harming themselves after exposure to UV rays have one of the following:
You should always protect yourself, even on a cloudy day.
Here are a few recommendations:
Use of a sunscreen recommended by the Canadian Dermatology Association is advised.
Children’s skin is more sensitive to sunlight than that of adults. Avoid exposing them to the sun without protection between 11 a.m. and 3 p.m. Lead by example by following the protection measures recommended.
Here are some additional measures for protecting children.
Do not use sunscreen on babies of this age. Their skin is super sensitive and applying such creams can cause allergic reactions.
To protect your baby:
To protect your child:
You can apply sunscreen on children over 6 months. However, make sure you use a sunscreen with an SPF of 30 or more and that is PABA free, as this is an ingredient that can cause allergic reactions.
Some medicines are photosensitizers, meaning they make the skin more sensitive to the sun's rays. They can cause, among other things, irritation, redness and swelling.
If you or your children take medication, ask your doctor or pharmacist if those medicines are photosensitizers.
Last update: June 29, 2017 2:51 PM
The information on this website by no means replaces the advice of a health professional. If you have questions regarding your health, contact Info-Santé 811 or see a health professional.