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Caregiving Chronicles

News and analysis on caregiving topics in MetroWest and beyond.

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Caregiving Chronicles will present news and analysis on caregiving topics in MetroWest and around the world, in-depth Q&As with experts in fields related to caregiving and updates and announcements about caregiving resources available in MetroWest from CaregivingMetroWest.org Program Director Douglas Flynn.


Three summer skin problems & how to avoid them
By DebraMcDonagh / July 3, 2019

The following content is from AARP, beginsat50.com

Think of a perfect summer day. You might conjure up clear blue skies, a dip in a pool and plenty of fun in the sun. But dry, irritated or sunburned skin can be a painful price to pay for the good times.With a little care, you can help avoid these common problems — and stay comfortable in your skin all summer long.

1. Ban the burn

Soaking up the sun may be good for you in small doses. But too much time catching rays may lead to skin damage and sunburn. To help avoid getting burned, follow these tips:

  • Apply and reapply sunscreen. Look for products labeled “broad spectrum” to ensure they block both UVA and UVB rays. And be sure they have an SPF (sun protection factor) of at least 15. Many doctors recommend an SPF of 30 or higher. Whatever kind of sunscreen you choose, be sure to read and follow the directions on the label. Apply it 15 to 30 minutes before heading outside. And reapply every 2 hours — or more often if you’re swimming or sweating.
  • Keep your skin covered. A wide-brimmed hat, long sleeves and pants may help shield you from the sun. Look for clothing that’s lightweight and loose-fitting.
  • Get your timing right. The summer sun is at its peak between 10 a.m. and 4 p.m. Try to limit your time spent outdoors during that window.
  • Know your meds. Ask your doctor or pharmacist if any medicines you take put you at extra risk for sunburns.

If you do get a sunburn, don’t scratch or peel loose skin. These calming tips might help instead:

  • Moisturize with hydrating creams.
  • Soak in a cool bath.
  • Stay in the shade or out of the sun until your sunburn heals.

2. Soothe dry skin

Even when the outdoor air is humid, things like air-conditioning, swimming pools and sun exposure may dry out your skin. These tips might help you stay moisturized:

  • Shower and shampoo right away after swimming.
  • Wash your skin with mild cleanser. Antibacterial or deodorant soaps may dry it out.
  • Slather on a fragrance-free body moisturizer within 5 minutes of bathing.
  • Turn up the thermostat a bit — or use a humidifier — to help keep indoor air from drying out.

3. Steer clear of heat rash

Heat rash happens more often in hot, humid weather. It’s caused by blocked sweat glands, which result in a rash and cluster of small, itchy bumps. When those bumps burst, the result may be an uncomfortable, tingling sensation.

One key to avoiding heat rash is minimizing sweat. To do so, you might:

  • Wear loose, breathable, cotton clothing.
  • Keep your skin cool with fans, air-conditioning and cool showers.
  • Exercise during the coolest times of the day or indoors.

Your doctor may prescribe a pain-relieving lotion if your rash is severe. But it’s a good idea to avoid baby powders, ointments and creams. These may block your pores even more.

Feel good in your skin

Caring for your skin is a year-round job — but it doesn’t have to feel like a chore. Check out these feel-good ways to pamper and nourish your skin.

Sources: American Academy of Dermatology; American Academy of Family Physicians; American College of Emergency Physicians; National Institute on Aging



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