June 16, 2022

Sun Safety Tips

By Gina Hethcock

Tips for Staying Safe in the Sun


Summer is here! Whether you’re spending the day at the ballpark, soccer fields or swimming pool, too much time in the sun can cause the skin to burn. A sunburn is a sudden injury in which the skin becomes damaged from natural or artificial ultraviolet (UV) radiation exposure.

If ultraviolet light exposure is excessive, long-term skin damage can occur. It is important for everyone to take proper precautions to protect themselves, especially children.


  • Apply sunscreen with an SPF of 30 to dry skin 15 minutes before going outside. If participating in a sport or activity, make sure your sunscreen is sweat resistant. Don’t forget to put sunscreen on those easy-to-forget areas such as the ears and scalp. Reapply sunscreen every couple of hours and after swimming or excessive sweating.
  • No matter your skin tone, apply sunscreen generously while outside, even when cloudy.
  • Wear sunglasses with UV protection.
  • After spending time in the sun, apply aloe vera or lotion to your skin, even if you don’t have a sunburn.
  • Always stay hydrated—the longer you’re in the sun, the more dehydrated your skin and body will get.
  • Stay in the shade when possible.
  • Wear large-brim hats when in the sun for extended periods of time.
  • Use a lip balm with SPF 30, at least, to protect your lips.

Know your sunburn risk. While it may look cloudy outside those UV rays are still emitting light and causing damage. Look for the UV index on your weather app or weather broadcast, and protect yourself accordingly.

Be an advocate for sun safety.

For schools, educators, and group leaders (scout leaders, camp counselors, etc.): Children should be encouraged to use sun protection during peak hours of sun exposure. Download NATA’s Sun Safety Tips to help educate children and teens.

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