•    9.7.2018

    The Dangers of UV Radiation and How to Avoid Them


The days spent at the beach or elsewhere in the outdoors are just around the corner. It is the time when we put our problems aside and try to relax and recharge our batteries. Swimming, resting and sunbathing on the beach are one of the most popular activities in the summer. All of them are usually done in the sun, which is a good source of vitamin D. However, at the same we are exposed to UV radiation that can cause serious skin injuries on the short and the long term, especially in the warmest summer months (June, July and August).


The threats

Over the past decades, the incidents of skin cancer conditions have increased significantly. Mostly related to the increase in popularity of outdoor activities in summer. Overexposure to sunlight strongly correlates with development of a skin condition, either cancerogenous or not.

According to the WHO every 4 out of 5 skin cancer developments could be prevented, if a proper protection was in place. US Environmental Agency states that every person out of five will develop some sort of skin cancer condition in the course of their lifetime and that every hour an American citizen dies due to the consequences of the disease.

Apart from skin cancer, the most common consequences of sun exposure are premature aging, spots or rashes on the skin, immune system suppression and eye damage.

 

How to avoid them?

In order to diminish such high percentage of skin conditions and especially the skin cancer, WHO recommends to stay in shade, wear protective clothing and apply sunscreen on body parts that remain exposed, such as face and arms. Sunscreen should never be used to prolong the duration of sun exposure.

Apart from the already-known protection facts, here are some additional suggestions to stay protected:

→ Limitation of sun exposure in the midday.

→ Checking the UV Index forecast in summertime - most of the weather reports also feature the UV index report per region on the scale from 1-10 (10 being the strongest).

→ Not every shade is a good shade: shade of some trees or umbrellas just partially protect you against the UV radiation, therefore, try to find as dense shade as possible and apply the rule: “Watch your shadow - Short shadow, seek shade!”

→ Use sunscreen with the minimum factor of UPF 15, but at least 20 is recommended, be cautious though, because it shouldn't be used for sun exposure prolongment (usually the UPF factor correlates with minutes a person should spend exposed to the sun. E.g. if UPF is 30, the exposure should’t exceed 30 minutes).

→ Wear techically protective clothing.

 

Why not wear cotton T-shirts?

Regular cotton t-shirt has UV protection factor up to 8, when dry. If it becomes wet, either due to sweat or water, the micro drops caught between fiber cause the so called the loop effect - meaning the UV exposure is intensified up to a point, where wearing no T-shirt causes less damage to your skin than wearing one.

UV protective clothing is crafted in a way where the items are specifically designed for sun protection and is produced from a fabric rated for its level of ultraviolet protection. Fabrics are also pre-treated with UV-inhibiting ingredients during manufacture, in order to enhance their effectiveness and prevent the ”loop effect”. 

As sun protective clothing is meant to be worn during warm and humid weather, which are the most common conditions on the beach, MAYA MAYA’s UV protection clothing is designed with UV blocking, ventilated waves, moisture wicking and antibacterial properties to assist in cooling and breathability. This is opposed to the sun creme, which jams the pores and prevents the skin to breathe.

UV clothing were firstly developed in Australia in 1990s where the skin cancer is widespread concern. Therefore, the scientists developed the UPF rating system rating the effective ultraviolet radiation (UV-R) transmission in percentages.

UPF RANGE

Protection category

Effective UV-R (%)

UPF Rating

15-24

Good

6.7 - 4.2

15, 20

25-39

Very Good

4.1 - 2.6

25, 30, 35

40-50, 50+

Excellent

Less than 2.5

40, 45, 50, 50+

Basically, a UPF of 50 indicates the fabric of a garment will allow only 1/50th (roughly 2%) of UV radiation to pass through it. The higher the number, the better protection the fabric offers.

All MAYA MAYA’s UV protective clothing ensure at least UPF rating of 30 or higher all the time during exposure to the sun.

The best results are always reached if all precautions are applied when being exposed to the sun’s radiation.






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