With Ontario lifting some of the COVID-19 regulations, the summer activities are sure to pick up in Windsor Essex. The beaches will be filled with water activities, parks will be packed with families, and all of Windsor will be out getting sun, how exciting! How do you protect your family and yourself from the unique dangers that come with summer? How do you go about it naturally? In today’s blog post, we will be going over naturopathic options for protection from the sun, bugs, and heat. This is your naturopathic guide to the summer!
Natural Sun & UV Ray Protection
Sun protection is perhaps the most serious topic when it comes to summer and prolonged outdoor exposure. It is important to find the right SPF product that covers both your UV protection needs and desire to use only natural skincare products.
So what ingredients are you looking for in a natural SPF product? There are two main ingredients for natural UV protection: Titanium Dioxide and Zinc Oxide. Let’s break down these two natural SPF ingredients even further.
- Zinc Oxide: A naturally reflective organic material that is capable of blocking out short and long UVA rays and UVB rays. Additional benefits to zinc oxide include it is antimicrobial and it does not clog your skin’s pores.
- Titanium Oxide: A naturally invisible organic material that is capable of blocking out short UVA rays and UVB rays. Additional benefits to titanium dioxide include it is gentle on sensitive skin and it does not clog your skin’s pores.
Additional natural SPF ingredients to look out for include:
- Aloe Vera
- Shea Butter
- Raspberry Seed Oil
- Coconut Oil
- Sesame Oil
My recommendation for natural UV protection is to look for products with these mentioned natural SPF ingredients. If you want to take it one step further, many recipes can be found online for homemade solutions!
Natural Bug Protection
Let’s tackle the most annoying part of summer… the bugs! Mosquitos, ticks, fleas, and other insects found in Windsor-Essex carry disease, ruin outdoor eating, and leave you with irritating bites to deal with. Protect your family this summer with these natural ingredients.
- Citronella & Citrus Oils: A well-known natural repellent that is particularly effective against mosquitos.
- Garlic Oil: A natural repellent that is effective at repelling ticks from outdoor areas. Check out this article on the city of Kingston using garlic oil to protect their dog parks: https://ottawa.ctvnews.ca/ticking-ticks-off-with-garlic-kingston-experiments-with-smelly-solution-1.4451488.
- Lavender Oil: A natural repellent with a lovely aroma. Although it is not as powerful, it is an option to pair with other ingredients for extra protection.
- Peppermint Oil: A natural repellent that can both kill and repel mosquitos. Be careful with the use of peppermint oil as it is quite potent!
- Cedarwood Oil: A natural repellent that can boost and improve the scent of homemade recipes.
Beating Heat Exhaustion
Nothing beats being outside during the peak of summer! But be careful not to overdo it. Heat exhaustion is very real and a serious threat to all of us. It is important to stay hydrated, cool, and in the shade periodically.
Avoid Heat Exhaustion:
- Stay hydrated and drink plenty of fluids throughout the day.
- Avoid wearing dark, tight, and unnecessary clothing on very hot days.
- Apply a generous amount of SPF when out in the heat.
- Ensure you take numerous breaks if outside for long periods.
- Limit the amount of caffeinated or alcoholic drinks consumed while in the heat.
- Avoid medication that could increase the risk of heat exhaustion.
Signs of Heat Exhaustion:
- Hyper sweating.
- Muscle pain and cramping.
- Cold skin.
- Mental fatigue and pain.
Treat Heat Exhaustion:
- Find a cool, dark place and get out of the heat.
- Drink cool water or sports drinks.
- Try to cool down your body by using cool towels or a cool shower/bath.
- Remove any unnecessary/tight clothing.
Stay safe during your summer activities Windsor-Essex! If you have any questions about my naturopathic guide to summer, please reach out by phone, email, or website.