When summer comes to an end, many folks look forward to and are ready for the fall and wonderful autumn weather. With the heat and humidity gone and as temperatures drop, you no longer have to concern yourself with protection from the sun. Or do you? Spoiler Alert…
Summer Has Gone, But The Sun Hasn’t
Summer may be over and temperatures will be dropping as leaves start to fall but the sun emits cancer-causing ultraviolet (UV) radiation year-round. So in answer to the question: “Do you have to protect yourself from the sun in Autumn?”, the Skin Cancer Foundation and dermatologists all say YES.
Autumn Can Increase The Likelihood Of A Sunburn
Though the temperature is cooler in autumn, you can still get over exposed to the sun and you can still get a sunburn. Three autumn sunburn risks to consider include reflection, altitude, and lack of noticeable heat.
- Reflection. The reflective properties of water and ice that you are exposed to when boating or on the ski slopes increase your risk of sunburn because ultraviolet rays are reflected from the surfaces of water, snow and ice to your skin.
- Altitude. Altitude also plays a role in autumn sunburn. The higher up you are in autumn activities like hiking, mountain climbing, or skiing, the closer you are to the sun and the thinner the air is, both of which lead to over-exposure to the harmful UV rays of the sun.
- Lack of noticeable heat. Unlike summertime when it is hot and you know and are reminded that you need sun protection, in autumn the weather gets cooler and cooler leading you to not even think about sun protection or to think that you don’t need sun protection.
Autumn Sun Protection Tips
Everyone should develop and exercise good year-round sun protection habits. People of all skin colors, types and ages, especially new born babies and children, are at risk from not just intense sun exposure, but incidental sun exposure as well. Helpful tips for autumn sun protection include:
- Between the hours of 10am and 4pm, seek the shade.
- Don’t allow your skin to burn.
- Don’t go to tanning booths.
- Cover your head with high quality UPF 50+ broad-brimmed hats.
- Cover bare arms with high quality UPF 50+ protect arm sleeves.
- Apply a broad-spectrum sunscreen to any exposed areas of your face, earns, nose, and neck.
- Do not apply sunscreen on newborns, keep them out of the sun.
- For babies over 6 months old, sunscreens can be applied.
- Reapply sunscreens every two hours.
- Regularly examine your skin from head to toe.
- See your dermatologist once a year for a professional skin examination and skin health assessment.