As we continue to enjoy the summer, I wanted to take a moment to talk a bit about sun safety with our autoimmune diseases.
Are you hiding out indoors?
Are you covering up?
Are you spending time in the A/C?
I hope you said yes to all the above, but just incase, let's chat about some of the ways that you can keep yourself safe this summer.
Ultraviolet light, specifically UV-A-2 and UVB, can induce a flare up of autoimmune condition symptoms for people with lupus.
It is important to protect yourself and be aware of these rays in your day-to-day life.
Without protection, you are putting yourself at risk of a systemic response which could lead to feeling ill, fever, chills, headache, joint pain, and an increased risk of sun burn.
We all know that the sun emits these rays, but did you know Xerox machine do too?
I recently read about a patient who had a flare up of lupus rasher all over her arms that crept up into her neck and face.
After a lot of trial and error along with investigation of symptoms, this individual found out that her flare up was from using a xerox machine when copying with the lid open.
The xerox lights had harmful UV rays that caused a flare up! Crazy, right?
There are lots of ways that you can keep yourself safe from these harmful rays, I put together a list below:
Wear sunblock on all exposed areas; even if it is overcast, always wear sunscreen.
One autoimmune patient recommended this:
"You can buy sunscreen products up to SPF 100-perhaps your dermatologist has a recommendation. Our dermatologist recommends Blue Lizard Sensitive Sport for the face - it's SPF 30, and they also make SPF 50 for the body.. https://bluelizardsunscreen.com/products/sensitive-face"
Wear a hat
A wide brim hat is ideal for the most coverage, but really any hat is better than nothing!
We have a few bucket hats in our shop.
Wear sun protective clothing
This clothing with help keep your body safe from those harmful rays.
Another autoimmune patient recommended this:
"Vapor Apparel is recommended by the Skin Cancer Foundation and they have a lot of cute reasonably priced women's clothing. https://vaporapparel.com/collections/all-womens."
We also have this (below) shirt in our Shop.
Avoid the sun during the highest ray times
We enjoying the outdoors in early morning and late evening.
Avoid being outside from 10am-4pm if you can.
The sun rays are the highest during this part of the day.
Lupus patients should never expose their skin for the sake of tanning.
This can cause the harmful rays to enter your body and cause an autoimmune flare up.
Avoid tanning in the sun and tanning beds.
If you are looking for more ways to manage your autoimmune disease we recommend checking out our blog for more helpful articles.
We hope you have a fun summer, and enjoy the sun as safely as possible!
Heather and Marc