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Offered by Mackenzie Seibert, CPNP – Brighton Pediatrics

Now that the kids are out of school and the beautiful Colorado sun is out, many kids are spending much more time outdoors in the sun. It is important to remember that the UV rays from the sun can cause painful sunburns, early wrinkling of the skin and an increased risk of developing skin cancer.

It is crucial to know the best ways to protect your kids from the sun. The sun is most intense from about 10am to 4pm each day. You can minimize exposure to the sun by staying in the shade and covering as much skin as possible. This can be done by wearing hats as well as lightweight clothing that covers the arms and legs. For skin that isn’t covered, sunscreen should always be used. Before heading into the sun you want to apply a sunscreen that has “broad spectrum”, has an SPF rating of at least 15, and is water resistant. With any sunscreen, regardless of what the SPF is, you should always re-apply at least every 2 hours. No sunscreen is completely waterproof so it should always be reapplied after swimming, sweating or other water activities. For infants under 6 months of age it is best to keep them in the shade and keep their skin covered. However, for the times they cannot be shaded or protected with clothing, you may use a small amount of sunscreen on the exposed skin.

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