Sun protection is not only needed at beaches and swimming pools but also when spending time in the mountains.
More UV rays reach the ground at higher elevations so make sure to protect yourself when hiking, camping or taking a dip in a wilderness lake.
UV radiation increases by about 4 percent for every 1,000-foot increase in elevation, according to the National Institutes of Health. For example, UV radiation can be 20 percent more intense at 5,000 feet than at sea level.
This is important to keep in mind for those visiting the mountains, and especially for those who live there. Living at higher elevations, where the sunlight is strongest, exposes you to more radiation, says the Mayo Clinic.
Here are some sun-safe tips to keep in mind when in the high country:
- Take advantage of all those trees and seek shade whenever possible.
- Make sure to use a sunscreen with a higher SPF. And don’t forget to put sunscreen on the tops of your ears — an often overlooked spot.
- Along with your skin, protect your eyes with sunglasses and your lips with chapstick or lip balm that contains SPF.
- Wear sun-protective clothing along with bandanas or wide-brimmed hats to cover your neck. We recommend UV Skinz’s Adventure Hat, which features a 4-inch wide front brim and 7.5-inch neck flap.