Rhinebeck, NY (PRWEB) July 11, 2014
As the Nat King Cole song says, its the lazy, hazy, crazy days of summer! Which means its the season for family vacations, lounging by the pool, visiting amusement parks, and walking barefoot on the beach. Being outside in the sun feels great, especially after the polar vortex winter of 2013 2014. But there are precautions that should be taken when spending time outside in the heat. Topical BioMedics offers tips for staying safe and healthy while catching some rays and waves.
Beach Bag Essentials
Whether youre spending the day by the shore, lake, or pool, there are several must-have items for toting in your beach bag:
-Lip balm: Lip protection is important to keep lips from getting chapped by the breeze or burned by the sun.
-Water shoes or flip-flops: Choose shoes that can get wet and rinse off easily. If you are heading to a public pool that has rough cement, fresh water swimming with a rocky bottom or ocean it would be safer to opt for water shoes with rubber soles with a mesh covering to protect feet and toes. Shoes also help protect delicate feet from hot sand and asphalt, which can cause severe burns. Just remember, flip flops do not offer any support whatsoever and should not be worn when youll be walking around for any length of time.
-Water bottle: Even though your family is spending the day at the beach, it is very important that you rehydrate throughout the day and having water handy will encourage your kids to replenish their fluids. Avoid alcoholic beverages, caffeine, soda, and other carbonated drinks, which are dehydrating.
-Head protection: Whether you choose a floppy straw hat or a baseball cap, be sure to include hats for every member of your family in your beach bag. Remember that ears get sunburned too so choosing a wide-brimmed hat is extremely useful for keeping the sun off ears, face and head.
-Eye protection: Sunglasses help shield the eyes from the harmful effects of the sun and also keep you from squinting, which can contribute to premature wrinkling. Be sure to choose sunglasses that have good UV protection.
Summer First Aid Kit for Active Families
Be prepared by keeping a first aid kit on hand for any incident that could put a damper on summer fun. One ideal one: Topricins Boo Boos Happen kit featuring a convenient zippered pouch with a tube of Topricin for Childrenthe doctor-recommended safe, natural alternative to chemical-based pills, ointment, and liquids, as well as a great all round first aid cream for treating bug bites, sunburns, and other aches and painsplus Ouchies design-your-own self-adhesive bandages with their own coloring markers, and handy travel-size packets of original Topricin and Topricin Foot Therapy Cream.
Other essentials to tuck into your vacation first aid kit:
-Ear plugs to keep water out of the ear to avoid discomfort and prevent bacterial from causing an infection
-Goggles to protect eyes and natural/homeopathic eye drops to relieve any irritation
-A vial of vinegar to treat jellyfish stings if youre at the ocean
-Alcohol wipes to disinfect or cleanse
-Extra bandages and gauze
-Antibiotic ointment to treat open wounds
-An antihistamine, just in case of an unexpected allergic reaction
The Great Sun Debate
To sunbathe or not to sunbatheTHAT is the hot topic of the season!
For years now weve been advised to stay out of the sun, and slather on sunscreen with ever-higher levels of SPF before we even think about setting a foot outside our air conditioned doors.
But the tide is changing, so to speak, and the sun is no longer seen as Public Enemy Number One. In fact, the decades-long moratorium on sunbathing has not done a thing to curb skin cancer rates, which are skyrocketing.
Numerous new reports and studies have experts recommending that we all need, and benefit, from the suns rays. It seems that regular, moderate, unprotectedyes thats right, unprotectedsun exposure, when thoughtfully managed, is essential. Its also the way our bodies generate vitamin D, an important ingredient for optimizing health and preventing disease. Its high time we embraced the sun, as in the USA vitamin D deficiency is now at epidemic levels.
Its come to light that the best way to optimize vitamin D levels is with limited sunscreen-free exposure to the sun. Safe, smart, strategic bouts of sunshine help the skin produce the Vitamin D our bodies need to build bones, curb inflammation, and boost the immune system. Moreover, research indicates that vitamin D and may help prevent as some types of cancer, including pancreatic, lung, breast, ovarian, skin, prostate, and colon. Ironically, a 2011 study published in Cancer Prevention Research suggests that optimal levels of vitamin D offer protection against sunburn and skin cancer.
Other benefits of the BIG D: it can help protect the body from diseases like multiple sclerosis, rickets (in the young), tuberculosis, inflammatory bowel disease, type 1 diabetes, inflammatory bowel disease, rheumatoid arthritis, and systemic lupus erythematosus. And, according to the Vitamin D Council, researchers at the University of Alabama at Birmingham have reported that lack of sun exposure may lead to cognitive decline over time.
Along with vitamin D benefits, UVB exposure has a number of positive health effects, including easing mild depression, enhancing energy levels, regulating melatonin, suppressing MS symptoms, and treating skin diseases. It also has been shown that 20 minutes of sun exposure can lower blood pressure.
When it comes to skin issues and concerns, apparently sunshine is goodits the sunburns that create problems and are hazardous to our health. Here are some tips for getting healthy doses of sunshine and vitamin D with minimal risk:
–Short, regular exposures have been found to be much more effective and safer than the occasional long one.
–Control your exposure and build up your tolerance slowly. To maximize your bodys natural Vitamin D production, start with 5 minutes of mid-morning sun without sun block, and work your way up to 20 – 30 minutes. (The sun is strongest midday so avoid being outside sans protection from high noon until a few hours beyond.)
–Dont overdo do it. After 30 minutes in the sun without skin protection, apply a safe, natural sunscreen.
— You also need to protect skin if youre in and out of the water, on a boat/doing any activity when the breezes can make you less aware that youre getting sun burned.
— Dont get fooled by cloudy days they can burn you just as easily as sunny ones.
Please note: If you are extremely fair skinned, have had skin cancer, or have any other concerns regarding sun safety, check with your doc first regarding appropriate levels of exposure to the sun and proper protection.
Its time to rethink your sunscreen as many readily available commercial brands contain toxins. Because your skin is your largest organ, these chemicals are readily absorbed directly into your body.
Some of the most common toxic chemicals typically found in sunscreen include:
Oxybenzone (linked to hormone disruption and cell damage that may lead to skin cancer)
Retinyl palmitate (a carcinogen)
Octyl-methoxycinnamate (causes oxidation damage to skin, which ages the face)
Butyl-Methdiebenzoylmethane (releases free radicals into the body)
Benzophenone 2 (BP2) (decreases the function of the thyroid)
Elizabeth Plourde, PhD, is a scientist whose book Sunscreens Biohazard: Treat as Hazardous Waste, documents the serious and even life-threatening dangers sunscreens pose not only to people but to o