When you decide to sunbathe, your body is exposed to ultraviolet rays, so you have to take care. This especially goes for women who are experiencing pregnancy. Ultraviolet rays are even more risky because during pregnancy your body has increased hormone levels. As a result of higher hormone levels, skin might become more sensitive as well. The UV rays burn the skin easily when its exposed for longer period of time. This can increase the risk of skin cancer (melanoma), which can occur after excessive exposure to the sun’s harmful rays.
In addition, sunbathing may decrease your body fluids, which may lead to dehydration. This is absolutely unacceptable for any body. If you’re pregnant, the lack of fluids such as water, could cause stress, which may cause pre-term contractions. Overheating is major risk as well, because the body with increased core temperature may easily cause birth defects.
Another thing that you should be aware of is that the sun’s UV rays break down the folic acid, and your body produces folic acid to decrease chances of birth defects.
To avoid some of these major risks, it is highly recommended that you do not expose yourself to too much sun heat and UV rays during pregnancy.
Steps to Protect Yourself From the Sun
Most people nowadays have a pretty good idea just how dangerous sunbathing can be if one is not careful. You can check out the following advice and products that give you a quick and easy way to protect your skin during pregnancy:
During pregnancy though, and as a future mom, it is vital that you take the necessary steps to protect yourself from the heat of the sun. Here is a few simple steps:
Apply sunscreen or suntan lotion – Applying sunscreen or suntan lotion regularly and generously is an absolute prerequisite to having a healthy and well-protected skin. Apart from providing protection, applying sunscreen is also a good way to moisturize your skin. Your body can easily dehydrate remember? Sunscreen also drastically reduces skin damage from heat and sun exposure.
Steer clear of the sun during peak hours – Make sure that that you do not expose yourself to the sun between 10 a.m. and 2 p.m. Of course, the risk is highest during the summer, but you should take heed regardless of the season. These are actually the prime hours for exposure to skin-damaging UV radiation – it also doesn’t matter whether it’s cloudy or not, the risk is still there.
Get some protective clothing – Yep, one of the best and easiest ways to protect your skin is to use conventional clothes such as shirts with long sleeves, pants, and sunglasses. Also, wide-brimmed hats are a good idea.
Forget the Chemicals
Going natural is always the ticket, and this golden rule goes for sunscreen as well. Always check to see the back of the product, and avoid if the sunscreen includes oxybenzone. Research has shown that this particular chemical, when absorbed into the skin, can cause major issues. It has also been linked to low birth weights. This may increase the risk of heart disease, hypertension, type 2 diabetes, and other diseases. Similar chemicals like oxybenzone were known to interfere with the body’s hormones, and that can lead to developmental problems in unborn babies.
Choose the Right Sunscreen or Lotion if You’re Pregnant
The important thing is to choose the appropriate formula that battles UVA and UVB rays with an SPF of 30 or higher. Should have extra-sensitive skin, then avoid chemical sunscreens and start using physical blockers – for that, check the label to see if it contains zinc oxide or titanium dioxide as the main ingredients. These will remain on the skin, and will be absorbed into it, which is cool skin protection scheme. For lotion or sunscreen you can try Neutrogena Sensitive Skin Sunblock Lotion SPF 60+.
To cut a long story short, it won’t matter much which sunscreen brand you choose. Believe it or not, how you use the product matters a lot and make sure you examine the expiration date. In this instance creams are best, particularly if you dry or sensitive skin. Lotions are also cool, because they easily cover large areas. They are also thinner and less greasy than creams. Gels are okay for hairy areas, which sticks are useful when applying sunscreen around the eyes.
Do your best to avoid sprays. For one thing, it’s not always easy to tell how well you have applied it, as opposed to cream or gel.