The National Council on Skin Cancer Prevention has designated this Friday, May 25, 2012, Don’t Fry Day. The Council’s goal is to encourage sun safety awareness by reminding everyone to protect their skin while enjoying the outdoors on Don’t Fry Day and every day.
Physical Sun blocks (Zinc Oxide &Titanium Dioxide) provide broad spectrum protection blocking both UVA and UVB rays and are gentle enough for daily use.
Chemical Sunscreens (most common sunscreens) are combinations of many active ingredients with no single chemical ingredient blocking the entire UV spectrum (unlike physical sun blocks).
School is coming to an end and summer is almost here. Sun Safety for school age children is so important because sun damage and skin cancer is so preventable! Simply changing a child’s behavior and attitude about playing outside makes a world of difference. The vast majority of skin cancer is caused by over-exposure to the sun’s ultraviolet (UV) radiation, particularly during childhood. Sun damage accumulates throughout your life- your skin never forgets a sun burn. Help children learn how to stay safe in the sun by teaching them why they need to protect themselves.
Students spend part of their school day and even more of their summer days playing outdoors. Through teaching children the principles of sun safety, you will encourage them to be aware of UV radiation while they are at home, school and summer camps.
Sun exposure in the first fifteen years is linked to the increased likelihood of skin cancer, including melanoma, as an adult. Children may not be aware of the sun’s UV rays or be able to protect themselves from the sun without reminders from the adults in their lives.
Remind your students to follow the “Slip, Slop, Slap, Sleek and Slide” method created by the SunSmart Cancer Council NSW. When the UV Index is 3 or above, you should protect yourself in five ways:
- Slip on clothing that covers your arms and legs
- Slop on 30+, broad-spectrum sunscreen and lipbalm
- Slap on a broad-brimmed hat
- Seek shade (see more below about how schools can provide shaded areas for school children)
- Slide on wrap-around sunglasses
The sun’s rays are most intense between 10 am and 3 pm and the strength of UV radiation varies with the time of year. While it is recommended that sun safety in Colorado should be a year-round concern, be sure to heighten the focus on sun safety, or to enforce sun safety policy, between March 1 and October 31. This is the time span during which the UV index routinely reaches or exceeds moderate levels.
Confirmthe relevant dates for your area by checking the annual UV index record. It is provided in graphic format by the National Weather Service for numerous cities at http://www.cpc.ncep.noaa.gov/products/stratosphere/uv_index/uv_annual.shtml