Summer Health

How to protect yourself from the Sun: better to be safe!

Did you know that skin cancer is one of the most common cancers in the UK? Too much sun can increase your risk and exposure to sunlight can also affect your eyes.

Be aware of any changes to your body; report mole changes or unusual skin growths to your GP immediately.

Sun protection is something you need to be aware of every day in the summer, when you are on holiday or at home. Here are some simple measures you can take to protect yourself:

  • Spend time in the shade between 11am and 3pm.
  • Make sure you never burn (use a high factor sun cream 15+).
  • Aim to cover up with a T-shirt, hat and sunglasses.
  • Remember to take extra care with children (by keeping them in the shade and covered in cool clothing)
  • Wear sunglasses

How can I prepare for a Heatwave?

Whilst we welcome hot weather, if it is too hot for too long there are health risks. The most vulnerable groups of people are:

  • Very young children
  • Elderly
  • Seriously Ill (hot weather can make heart and breathing problems worse)

The main risks are:

  • dehydration (which is often caused by not drinking enough water in hot weather)
  • overheating, which can make symptoms worse for people who already have problems with their heart or breathing
  • heatstroke or heat exhaustion

Here are some top tips on to keep cool and comfortable:

  • Shut windows and pull down the shades when it is hotter outside. If it's safe, open them for ventilation when it is cooler.
  • Avoid the heat: stay out of the sun and don't go out between 11am and 3pm (the hottest part of the day) if you're vulnerable to the effects of heat.
  • Keep rooms cool by using shades or reflective material outside the windows. If this isn't possible, use light-coloured curtains and keep them closed (metallic blinds and dark curtains can make the room hotter).
  • Have cool baths or showers, and splash yourself with cool water.
  • Drink cold drinks regularly, such as water and fruit juice. Avoid tea, coffee and alcohol.
  • Stay tuned to the weather forecast on the radio or TV, or on the Met Office website.
  • Plan ahead to make sure you have enough supplies, such as food, water and any medications you need.
  • Identify the coolest room in the house so you know where to go to keep cool.
  • Wear loose, cool clothing, and a hat if you go outdoors.
  • Check up on friends, relatives and neighbours who may be less able to look after themselves.

Hay Fever

Did you know Hay fever affects around 1 in 4 people in the UK?

The main triggers of hay fever are tree and grass pollen. Pollen from weeds and shrubs can also trigger symptoms. The pollen count tends to be higher on hot, dry days. Fungal spores are around on most mild damp days, but are particularly high after harvesting and in the autumn. For more information and tips to help you avoid pollen and lessen the chances of hay fever: Preventing hay fever.

General Information

Last reviewed: 12/03/2020