This is the time of year where summer is near, as we begin to prepare for hurricane season, which is approaching rather quickly. A time for graduations, proms, the end of the school year, barbeques and family vacations. On this day before Memorial Day or, Friday, May 27th, the folks over at the U.S Environmental Protection Agency or EPA has designated this as “Don’t Fry Day”.
The EPA’s SunWise Program, the largest environmental and education program, have joined its sunny forces along the National Council on Skin Cancer Prevention, to bring awareness to the public in offering simple ways in promoting sun safety for all walks of life. Whether you are fair-skinned or not, man or woman or, a Floridian or a New Yorker, it is important and critical to implement these tips cautiously, while doing away with the potential dangers with being exposed to the rays of the sun.
South Florida residents are especially vulnerable since we are so close to the equator, it gives us a greater reason for being extra vigilant, as we must exercise greater responsibility above the rest, in preserving our health and saving lives to our surrounding environments, families, friends and ourselves, one sunshining day at a time.
Statistically, the leading cause of skin cancer within the US is melanoma, as this is on the rise, stemming from young folks between the ages of 25-29. More startling that this, one American dies from skin cancer at every hour, (that’s 24 people a day), as this affects two million people every single year more than breast, prostate, lung and colon cancer combined. This is serious business folks and a rather scary reality, for one in five will get skin cancer in their lifetime.
According to Gina McCarthy who is an administrative employee for the EPA’s Office of Air and Radiation, “Many people still do not realize that unprotected sun exposure can lead to skin cancer and other health problems”. Adding that “simple steps such as using sunscreen, putting on sunglasses or wearing a hat can protect us and our families, while still enjoying the outdoors.” Overall the overexposure to the ultraviolet or UV rays certainly is the main factor for this type of situation.
It is encouragble to learn about safe practices and the reduction of these UV rays.
For “Don’t Fry Day” the EPA offers the following guidelines to limit this when a person steps outside their home.
1.) “Slip, Slop, Slap and Wrap” Slip on a shirt or top. Slop on the sunscreen of SPF 15 or higher (I recommend using an SPF of 30 or higher). Slap on a hat. Wrap on a pair of sunglasses (that’s UV ready).
2.) Seek shade wherever possible. This is hard to do for our sunny Florida but do your best. The peak hours of the sun is between 10am and 4pm.
3.) Monitor and check your UV index. In other words, check the index mark to become mindful of the times of day that poses the greatest exposure to the sun.
This becomes a green issue as awareness becomes key, especially for the children and the elderly, as it makes the difference in our lives. So do the right thing as together, we could share the knowledge and remain true to ourselves in true green fashion. Stay safe, love yourselves, Peace+Godsend to all.