Did you know that protecting yourself from the harmful UV rays of the sun as an adult is one of the best ways to teach children to do it too?
Researchers, psychologists, parents and teachers have long known that children imitate adult behaviour – both good and bad. This is why when it comes to sun safety, setting the best example is so important for teachers and parents.
You may know that exposure to high levels of ultraviolet (UV) radiation in sunlight can cause skin cancer – but did you know that not enough time in the sun can mean low levels of vitamin D?
Vitamin D keeps our bones healthy and strong for life, and reduces the risk of osteoporosis in adults – a condition causing brittle bones.
In NSW, UV levels are at their lowest in June and July. In the north and far west, most people need 20-25 minutes of sun exposure during mid-morning or mid-afternoon, and in the south 30-40 minutes in the middle of the day. This will keep your vitamin D levels topped up during winter and means braving the chill and rolling up your sleeves to get some sunlight on your forearms as well as your hands.
Don’t risk damaging your skin. UV levels can change from day to day. When UV levels are 3 and above use sun protection. People who use sunscreen regularly when UV levels are 3 and above do not have lower vitamin D levels than people who don’t.
Check UV levels for your local area on the free SunSmart App for smart phones, download it from the App Store or Google Play. Talk to your doctor if you have any concerns about developing a vitamin D deficiency.