From the Archives: Summer 2005 Issue of Lupus Now Magazine
Sunny days call for wise packing!
By Jaclyn Law
Summer’s here! The start of long, sunny days is usually a welcoming sign, but for people with lupus, the sun’s ultraviolet (UV) rays can cause serious symptoms—or even trigger a flare. Most of us, though, can still enjoy the summer weather—with a few safeguards in place. So, when you do venture outdoors, don’t leave home without these sun-safety essentials in your tote bag:
Long sleeves and pants and a wide-brimmed hat should be your wardrobe. Darker colors, thicker fabrics, and tighter weaves all add protection. Or, invest in sun-protective clothing, such as those made by Coolibar (www. coolibar.com) and Sun Precautions (www.sunprecautions.com), which block more than 97 percent of UV rays. Choose from stylish jackets, shirts, pants, hats, and swimwear for adults and kids.
Broad-spectrum sunscreen or sunblock is a must. Choose a product with a sun protection factor (SPF)
of at least 15 to 30. You can also buy stronger products, such as the water-resistant SPF 58 COTZ by Fallene Total Block (www.totalblock.com). Women should also consider wearing makeup that contains sunscreen.
Your lips are vulnerable to sun damage. Cover them with lip protectant with SPF 15.
Who says umbrellas are just for rainy days? The lightweight CAKOON UVbrella blocks 99.9 percent of UV rays and is only 6 inches long when closed. To order, call 1-888-225-6665 or visit www.raybeth.com ($17.95 plus shipping and handling).
Boost the UV protection of your regular clothes with Rit® Sun Guard. Just add it to your wash cycle, and your clothes will block 96 percent of UV rays for up to 20 washings. Available at supermarkets, drug stores, and at www.dermadoctor.com. com
Look like a movie star and prevent cataracts with sunglasses. Look for a label that says the lenses block 99 to 100 percent of UVA and UVB rays. (Lenses that are dark, polarized, or mirrored don’t necessarily offer UV protection.)
Kids and adults both love SunSpots Stickers. Apply the stickers to your skin with your sunscreen. When they turn orange from sun exposure. It’s time to cover up or seek shade. Available at www.familymeds. ($6.39 for 24 stickers).
The Smart Shade pop-up sunshelter provides protection from the sun instantly and safely. There is no assembly required, and the sunshelter folds down into a handy carry bag with backpack straps. Available at www.sunprotectiveclothing.com ($115.00).