Vitamin D is important for healthy bones. Exposure to the sun allows our bodies to produce vitamin D. For this, you only need to be exposed to the sun’s rays for around 15 minutes a day. On a sunny day, this should be enough time for your body to start producing vitamin D. Too much sun exposure could put your child at risk of developing skin cancer in later life. Skin cancer is one of the most common cancers, and the number of people affected is on the rise.
It’s important to protect your child’s skin from the sun’s harmful rays. If your child is a sports fanatic, he’s likely to be spending quite a lot of time outdoors. You must ensure his skin is protected when he’s on the field. Here are five tips for keeping your kids sun-safe during games:
#1: Apply Sunscreen
Choose a sunscreen that provides adequate protection for your child. Younger children should be wearing sun block that prevents any of the harmful rays from reaching their skin. For children aged four and over, an SPF of 30 should suffice. Sunscreen should be applied before your child goes outside, ideally around 30 minutes before to give it time to start working. It must be reapplied throughout the day, at least every couple of hours to provide your child with the maximum protection.
#2: Dress Code
The clothes your child wears offer important protection from the sun’s rays. Vests may keep your child cool, but they don’t offer much in the way of sun protection. Choose clothes that will allow your child to stay covered without causing them to overheat. If you don’t think your child’s kit offers adequate sun protection, speak to the coach about alternative clothes.
#3: Kick Off Time
Experts advise staying out of the sun during peak time. The sun’s rays are at their strongest between 11am and 3pm, and you should try to stay in the shade during these hours. This is even more important for children. You may not be able to take control of when your child’s games are, but you can try to maximize his time in the shade during peak hours. If the game starts at 1pm, try to make sure he isn’t in the sun for long before kick off.
#4: Stay Hydrated
When your child is running around and exercising, it’s important he stays hydrated. This is especially important on hot days. Your child will need to increase his liquid intake on warm days, so make sure he’s drinking plenty of water. Encourage him to keep a cold bottle of water on the bench so he can stop for a drink whenever necessary.
#5: Lead By Example
Your child isn’t going to take sun safety seriously if you are the one that ends up lobster red after every game. Follow your own advice and set a good example to your child. Wear appropriate clothes, use sunscreen and try to sit in the shade during peak hours. Always apply your own sunscreen when you tell your child to, this sets a great example and can keep your skin safe too.