skin protection when mowing lawn

How to Avoid Sunburn and Skin Damage When Mowing the Lawn

About 80,000 individuals are transported to the ER every year due to lawn mower injuries, according to the Consumer Product Safety Commission! It's simple: lawnmowers, weed eaters, and hedge clippers, all of which are used to keep the lawn in good shape, are among the most hazardous items in an American home

Mowing your lawn may seem like a normal activity; however, there may be an even more hazardous, unforeseen, silent danger – sunburn!

So, how can you have a beautiful lawn while remaining safe from the sun? Before you start mowing, here are some tips on how to mow the lawn while you avoid sunburn.

mowing lawn

Have You Heard of the Hidden Lawn Care Danger?

According to the American Cancer Society, melanoma can be caused by overexposure to the sun; although, admittedly it can be caused by a lot of things. Sun exposure, however, can be a huge factor.

Even small exposures, such as those associated with lawn mowing, might increase the risk of skin cancer. So, even if you have to mow your grass for 30 minutes, you need to apply skin protection.

Too much exposure to the sun even for 20 minutes without protection can damage your cells. You need to protect your skin.

Yes, the sun provides Vitamin D, which is crucial to battling depression. It also aids in the regulation of calcium and phosphorus as well as the proper function of the immune system. There are other potential sun exposure hazards that you need to be aware of.

Sunburns are the most prevalent sickness caused by excessive sun exposure. They impair the skin's capacity to expel excess heat, which can lead to heat-related disorders such as heat stroke. Even a slight reddening of the skin indicates injury, which can escalate to blisters and peeling.

Not Just Sunburns!

Aside from sunburns, you are also at risk of developing eye irritation due to exposure to UV rays. You can also suffer from allergic conjunctivitis or itchy, irritated eyes. Cataracts, for one thing, is one of the most common eye diseases that result from excessive sun exposure.

You can also develop several heat-related illnesses including mild heat stress symptoms, headaches, and heatstroke.

mowing lawn

Are You at Risk for Sunburns?

You are more at risk for sunburn if you have fair skin and are exposed to sunlight. You are also at risk for sunburn if you do not wear protective clothing when you mow your lawn, and you don’t have enough sun protection.

The symptoms of sunburn vary from one person to another, but generally, sunburnt skin can be red, painful, swollen, warm, and blistered. You would also notice dryness, itchiness, and peeling a few days after the excessive sun exposure.

When sunburn symptoms are severe, you will need immediate medical care. You would know if it is severe if you are experiencing fever, chills, weakness, confusion, nausea, dizziness, and vomiting.

Of course, these symptoms are also similar to the symptoms of other health conditions, so it is best to consult your healthcare provider for a proper diagnosis.

How is Sunburn Treated?

The treatment you receive will be determined by your symptoms and the severity of the sunburn. The following are some of the treatments:

  • Taking a chilly (but not freezing) bath
  • Gently pat the skin with a cold, damp towel
  • Using lotion to add moisture to the skin
  • Using aloe vera gel or a 1% hydrocortisone cream
  • Taking pain relievers such as acetaminophen or ibuprofen

A sunburn usually heals in one to two weeks on its own. While you're recuperating, be sure to stay out of the sunlight as much as possible. Exposing your skin to more sunlight will aggravate the burn.

Be sure to avoid popping blisters as this can result in infections. You need to stay hydrated by drinking lots of water. If it's bad, you might want to discuss the risks, benefits, and side effects of medications with your doctor.

cutting grass

Can You Prevent Sunburn?

Yes! Here are our tips on how you can avoid sunburn and skin damage when mowing your lawn.

Apply a Little Sunscreen

Wearing sunscreen and protective gear is one approach to avoid being sunburned. Sunscreens can filter or prevent the sun's rays from damaging your skin. It comes in a variety of forms, including lotions, creams, sprays, and powders. 

Oxybenzone and avobenzone, for example, are compounds that can absorb and filter sunlight. Other types of sunscreens use chemicals like zinc oxide or titanium dioxide to physically block light. 

No sunscreen can completely block UV rays. 

However, they help protect the skin.

Applying sunscreen is both the most apparent and the most disregarded piece of advice available. Sunscreen helps create a physical barrier between your skin and the sun's harmful radiation. 

You can always choose to get spray sunscreen if you don't enjoy having your hands goopy, or you find it difficult to apply lotion on hard-to-reach locations. 

You would also find a sunscreen that smells great, and you can have a good time with it. Simply use it before going out to mow your lawn.

When applying sunscreen, make sure to:

  • Use a sunblock with a sun protection factor (SPF) of at least 30.
  • Choose sunscreen products that can protect against both UVA and UVB radiation.
  • Use sunscreen products that are waterproof or water-resistant.
  • Be sure to cover all exposed skin, including your ears, lips, the back of the neck, and the tips of the feet.
  • Put it on 30 minutes before you start mowing your lawn.

Use Head Protection or Your Favorite Hat

There are places where your old ballcap or scruffy sombrero can cause a lot of embarrassment for you, but that's not the case if you're in your backyard. You don't have to toss away your college cap.

You can use it as protection when you mow your lawn. You can also choose to wear Primo Supply's Wearable Hands-free Umbrella Sun Rain Blocker.

Hands-free Umbrella Sun Rain Blocker

It is really useful protection against rain or UV rays. It is the perfect protection against the sun's harmful rays when you're mowing or doing some gardening.

You can get one for your kids, and they can wear one when they are out with you or being pushed in a carrying seat. You can use it as an umbrella for trekking, hiking, or backpacking because it’s quite convenient to use.

Mow Your Yard at the Right Time

The hottest time of the day is between 11 a.m. and 4 p.m. when the sun's rays are the most intense (and deadliest). This five-hour period of the day is when the Earth is most pointed at the sun as it revolves. 

Although you do not influence the planet's rotation, you do have power over when you are exposed to the sun. To reduce the intensity of the sun, use the lawnmower before or after this time. 

Bonus tip: mowing your lawn a few hours before or after this time is also best for your lawn.

To develop and be healthy, your grass, like all plants, needs to be trimmed and mowed. But as much as you want a beautiful and neat yard, you have to make sure you won't put your health at risk.