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Tips for protecting kids from the sun

There is more than just COVID to consider.
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Posted at 4:24 PM, Aug 10, 2021
and last updated 2021-08-10 20:32:43-04

BAKERSFIELD, Calif. (KERO) — With back to school coming up, many students will be heading back to school in triple-digit temperatures. With that comes a variety of heat-related concerns. 23ABC’s Rosaura Simone has a few tips on how parents can protect their kids from the sun.

Back to school is ramping up and with many parents focused on protecting their kids from the coronavirus, some may be forgetting about the sun. This summer Kern County has seen several heat waves with triple-digit temperatures. So with kids heading back to the school in the heat, some like Helen Alonzo who’s grandkids will soon be in class, have some questions.

“Sunscreen I never thought of. In today's world, we’re more worried about them having masks and hand sanitizer to be safe. I didn't think about the sunscreen. How often are you supposed to put on sunscreen,” she asked.

Dr. Lindsey Bennett, a dermatologist from Kaiser Permanente has the answers.

“The recommendation is that sunscreen be reapplied every few hours when you’re active and outdoors in the sun.”

Dr. Bennett says for kids who are in the sun for few hours a day it is most important to reapply sunscreen right before going outside or there could be consequences down the road.

“Not using sunscreen can lead to skin cancer over time. That’s the one thing we all talk about. We know that there is an increase in melanoma as well as basal cells and squamous cells with significant sun exposure over time along with bad intermittent burns.”

Dr. Bennet says for those who reapply their sunscreen religiously, SPF 30 is enough. But those who cannot should aim for those creams with a higher SPF like 50. She also recommends remembering the 5 S's:

Tips for using Sunscreen

Dr. Bennett also says the way you apply sunscreen is key.

“My recommendation to all of you is to take sunscreen and work with your parents and learn how to really a good heavy layer across the face, your nose, and all those little areas that are hard to get. The tops of your ears. If you’re wearing open-toed shoes or flip-flops to school you need to be able to put it on your toes because anywhere that skin is exposed you can potentially get a sunburn.”

Dr. Bennett encourages everyone to start applying sunscreen and protecting their skin at an early age to avoid any potential consequences in the future. She says one of the most important things to remember when applying sunscreen is the amount. So to get a golf ball size to apply.