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July may be UV Safety Month, but do not forget about UV safety the other 11 months of the year. Sun safety needs to be considered every day—even if it is cloudy.

Doing so is fairly simple:

  • Seek Shade. This is one of the easiest ways to reduce your skin damage and skin cancer risk, especially if you are outside between 10 a.m. and 4 p.m.
  • Cover Up. Wear clothing to protect any exposed skin, even in the shade. This means a wide brim hat, sunglasses with UVA/UVB protection and clothing made of a tightly woven fabric.
  • Lather Up. You should put sunscreen on before you head outside. A broad spectrum protection product with a Sun Protection Factor (SPF) of at least 50.

Sunscreen wears off, washes off and sweats off and put it on again if you've been out for more than one hour. While being in the shade is good; know that if you're on water, sand, or cement  you could be getting hit by a reflection of the sun's rays.

According to the American Cancer Society, skin cancer (including melanoma and basal and squamous cell) is by far the most common cancer diagnosed every year and anyone can get it. Whether you're on your boat, camping in the woods or gardening in the back yard, find out what your UV index will be for the day. That way you can take the appropriate precautions to keep your skin healthy.

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