Here are some tips to help you and your family stay safe and enjoy another great Michigan Summer:
Protect yourself from the sun: While choosing the best sunscreen is important, even more crucial is using it correctly — something a lot of us don’t do. Sunscreen is best applied before going outdoors and before planned activity. Once outdoors, it is best to reapply sunscreen again following swimming or participating in an activity where you may sweat. Although some sunscreen products claim they remain effective after swimming, it is always best to reapply sunscreen after drying off. The FDA defines water-resistant sunscreen as meaning that the SPF level stays effective after 40 minutes in the water. Sunscreens are in no way waterproof, so you’ll need to reapply them regularly after you take a dip.
Wearing a hat and sunglasses with UV-A and UV-B type filtering and some sun protection clothing is always recommended which is more effective than just sunscreen alone.
Hydrate: Most of us don’t drink enough water every day and there are plenty of benefits to making sure you are well-hydrated. Eight glasses of water a day is the right amount for some people, but depending on your weight and age, you may need more. The medical research center at the Mayo Clinic devised a formula to help you to come up with your own optimal daily water consumption amount: divide your weight by 2.2. Multiply that number by your age. Finally, divide that sum by 28.3. For example, if you weigh 170 pounds and are 50 years old, you should consume 136 ounces of water each day which equals 17 eight ounce cups. This may seem like a lot of water, but remember that coffee, juice, and the water in fruits and vegetables also count towards this amount. Coffee does not cause dehydration, but drinking alcohol will dehydrate your body.
Keep the mosquitos away: At best, mosquitoes are incredibly annoying and make us itchy. At worst, they can spread disease. To keep them away, start by making sure that there is no standing water on your property our near where you gather outdoors.
One simple and inexpensive solution is something called a “mosquito dunk.” They have pros and cons, so read this article about mosquito dunks first before you decide if they are right for your property.
A more expensive, but well-rated mosquito deterrent is the Thermacell. This unit works well for keeping mosquitos away when relaxing at night on an outdoor patio or deck.
If you are out and about when mosquitoes are most active, consider wearing light fabric clothing that covers your arms and legs and/or applying a good mosquito repellent. Studies have shown that mosquitoes are more attracted to dark colored clothing. “Mosquitoes really like dark, black colors,” Jeff Riffell, Ph.D., a biology professor at the University of Washington and one of the study’s authors. “What that might indicate is that they are really sensitive to desiccation or losing water, and so they want to find dark, shady areas to rest.” You can learn more about mosquitos and how to keep them at bay in this article from VERIFY.