Check Your Health: 6 things to pack in your bag to keep you sun safe

Check Your Health: 6 things to pack in your bag to keep you sun safe (File photo: MGN Online)

(KUTV) One in five Americans will develop skin cancer in their lifetime. Utah has the highest rates of melanoma in the country.

Only five sunburns as a child significantly increases your risk of developing melanoma. Here are six must-have items to pack in your bag to keep you sun safe.

1. Sunscreen: Choose a water-resistant, broad spectrum sunscreen that is 30 SPF or higher. Broad spectrum means it protects you from both UVA and UVB rays. A rule of thumb for applying/reapplying sunscreen: two tablespoons every two hours.

2. Sunscreen for your lips: Don’t forget your lips! You can easily find moisturizing lip balm that contains UV protection.

3. Sunglasses with UV protection: Make sure that you’re always wearing sunglasses and that your sunglasses contain UV protection. Sun damage actually affects your eyes as well as your skin.

4. A hat that covers your ears: If you wear a hat that covers your ears along with sunscreen, you are protecting the most exposed areas of your body from damage from harmful UV rays.

5. Sunsafe clothing: Every sports store or outdoor retailer sells a variety of lightweight clothing with built in UV protection.

6. Bring Your Own Shade: Even when you are wearing sunscreen, it is best to stay in the shade between the hours of 10 am to 4 pm. If you make it a habit to always carry a big umbrella or shade structure with you, or keep it in your car, you always have your own shade.