Enjoy the outdoors this summer!

From Blue Cross Health Matters Newsletter

Fun in the sun!

Apply early. The sun’s ultraviolet (UV) rays can damage your skin in as little as 15 minutes. Apply sunscreen with an SPF 15 or higher 15 to 20 minutes before you go outside. Reapply every 2 hours or sooner if you sweat or swim.

Take cover. Clothing and hats can also protect you and your family from UV rays. Choose styles that cover your face, neck, elbows and knees. And while the shade of a tree might give coverage from the sun, it’s still possible to get sunburned.

Timing is everything. Plan outdoor activities ahead of time to avoid peak-sun hours (10 a.m. to 4 p.m.)

Avoid a bad situation. Keeping kids in the car to avoid the heat and sun is unsafe. Doing so can cause dehydration, heatstroke, and even death.

Stay hydrated! 

Drink up. You should drink 6 to 8, 8-oz. glasses of water a day. In the summer, you’ll want to drink more. Try drinking water before, during and after all outdoor activities.

Know the signs. The warning signs of dehydration are thirst, dry or sticky mouth, headache, irritability and fatigue. If you experience any of these signs, call your in-network doctor right away.

Go for a ride!

Cover your head. Bikes and skateboards are more fun in the sun. They can also lead to head injuries. Wear a properly fitted helmet as a prevention method.

Know the rules. When riding on the street, be sure to follow the rules of the road. Go with the flow of traffic, look both ways before crossing and use hand signals before turning.

Be seen. Wear bright colors when riding day or night. Add reflective tape or a flashing light to get the attention of others on the road.