Every summer we hear the same tips about avoiding sunburn and rip tides, and keeping kids safe and active. Often, we hear the same myths, too, and sometimes it can be hard to separate fact from fiction. This year, we thought we’d clear the air on some misinformation you might not realize is false, by addressing a few common summer health myths.
- Myth 1: Build a proper base tan, and you won’t get a sun burn. The theory here is that if you ease into the sunny season, building up your sun tolerance little by little, you’ll be less likely to get a skin damaging burn, and it’s partially true. Having a tan makes you less likely to burn. It doesn’t actually protect you, though, and you should still wear sunscreen every time you go out. Remember, too, that a tan is, in and of itself, skin damage.
- Myth 2: If you’ve been in the pool all afternoon, there’s no need to take a shower. While it’s true that chlorine kills germs, it can also irritate skin and endow your hair with a greenish tinge. It’s best to bathe or shower after a day of swimming to remove all traces of pool chemicals from your skin and hair. If you’ve been sharing a pool with other people, you’ve also been sharing their dirt, which is another reason bathing is a good idea.
- Myth 3: Sea water heals cuts. It is true that sterile saline has healing properties. The problem is, the ocean is far from sterile. Swimming with an open wound can introduce unhealthy, sometimes dangerous bacteria in to a place where you’re very vulnerable to infection, so don’t swim if you’ve got a fresh wound, and bandage an already healing injury before you hit the water.
- Myth 4: You burn more calories in the summer because you sweat more. While you will burn calories if you exercise enough to work up a sweat, sweating alone doesn’t burn more calories. You’ll get the same benefits from a workout no matter what the season, because the same amount of exertion produces the same results. Take caution, too, during summer months, because sweating causes you to lose fluid, and you can quickly become dehydrated if you’re not careful.
There’s plenty of misinformation circulating about taking care of your health, so make sure you check your facts with a reliable source before just going with “common knowledge.” At our clinic, we are invested in educating our patients so that they’ll know the best ways to live healthy, happy lives. Call today for a free consultation, and learn how we can set you on the path to optimal wellness.