How to Stay Safe in the Arizona Sun

Jun 17, 2019

Jenni Ribbens

by Jenni Ribbens
PT, DPT | South Chandler Location

June is here and the temperature is starting to rise after a cooler May. Kids are out of school and summer vacation is in full swing. Growing up in Arizona means we are out in the sun a lot during the summer. Being safe in the sun is very important while going on a hike or having a pool day. According to, “more people are diagnosed with skin cancer each year in the U.S. than all other cancers combined.” Bellow you will find the ABC’S of sun safety to help you enjoy your summer with a decreased risk of skin cancer.

Stay AWAY from midday sun.

The sun is the most powerful during the hours of 10 am and 3 pm. Many of us are out in the sun during these hours. This is when it is the most important to limit your contact to the sun’s harmful rays. So, try and get those hikes in early in the morning or save your errands till after 3 pm if possible, to be safe.

BLOCK the sun with sunscreen

The use of sunscreen daily is very important. Sunscreen should be applied 30 minutes before you leave your house and should then be applied every 2 hours to keep your skin safe. The SPF (Sun Protection Factor) tells you how long the UV radiation will take to redden you skin when used as direct. For example, if you are using SPF 30, it should take about 30x longer for your skin to redden compared to not wearing sunscreen. Additionally, SPF 30 allows 3 percent of UVB rays to reach your skin, and SPF 50 allows 2 percent. It is recommended by the skin cancer foundation that you use SPF 30 or higher when outside.

COVER UP when in direct sun

In addition to wearing sunscreen, you can use clothing to protect your body from the sun. Using items like hats and sunglasses can all contribute to added protection of your body from the sun.

Use the SHADE.

When out in the sun for long periods of time, taking time to take a break in the shade can be helpful. Using an umbrella or canopies can be helpful when working outside.
I have lived in Arizona all my life and have always looked forward to summer as a kid. Do your kids a favor and instill in them helpful practices to keep them safe during the summer. Also, don’t forget to check yourself and your kids regularly for skin cancer spots.
With locations all over the valley, we have a convenient clinic next to you. Come in to Foothills Sports Medicine Physical Therapist to get your move back.

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