Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Things I've Learned About Summer

Over the years, I've heard so many tales about stuff that fits the summer time.  Stuff like getting a good tan will prevent you from getting sunburnt...needing to shower right after swimming to stop your skin from drying out and to wash off the bacteria from the pool... stuff like that.

Then, yesterday, I get a news article from one of my local news stations about common myths from summer time - and I was fascinated.  All my life, I've believed many of these things to be true - and come to find out?  Totally not.  So, I thought I'd share them with you today... see if I was alone in believing stuff that I'd heard growing up.

12 Summer Time Myths:

1.  Peeing on a jellyfish sting is helpful.  Totally not true.  In fact, it will actually hurt the victim worse than help.  This myth came about from "Friends".. the show.  Can you believe that?  There is absolutely no health or pain benefits from peeing on someone that receives a jelly fish sting.  In fact, the only natural remedy to help with the pain is vinegar.

2.  Cold showers cool you off.  I kinda knew this one.. but still have done it to cool off.  Cold showers will cool you off while you're standing under the water, but the minute you get out... you'll probably start sweating as your body hasn't adjusted.  The shock from the cold water will just increase your body temperature when you get it makes you feel even hotter and sweater than when you started.  The best way to cool off is a lukewarm shower and eating or drinking something cold.

3.  You can't get sunburned on a cloudy day.  I knew that.  Mostly from experience.  Even though it takes quite a bit of sun for me to get burned... I've received a nice tan from being outside on a cloudy day.  Clouds don't block the sun's UV rays.  So, if the sun's not out ladies... doesn't mean you can't still get your tan on!

4.  Drinking any fluid keeps you hydrated.  Duh.  Totally knew this one.  If you're out in the sun and drinking nothing but Pepsi or Mountain Dew - you're going to end up dehydrating yourself rather than staying hydrated.  Even those sporty drinks like GatorAde won't really help hydrate your body when it's hot and sweaty.  The best drink is... surprise, surprise... water!

5.  You burn more calories in warmer weather.  Total LIE!  Which is very disheartening to someone like me who is currently working her booty off in the sun to try and lose weight.  Your body adjusts to the heat, so regardless of the weather... you're still burning about the same number of calories.  And producing more sweat is just your body's way of cooling you down... so that's not going to help, either.  Total bummer!

6.  Longer days mess with your sleep.  To be honest, I've never heard this one.  When I'm tired, I'm tired... and I sleep.  Since teaching summer school, my behind has been asleep before it's dark outside and I've had no problems whatsoever.  If you're on a solid sleep schedule, you won't get messed up from the sun being out later than it was in the winter.  Good to know though.

7.  Air Conditioning will increase your chances of getting a summer time cold.  Do people actually think that?  Well, I guess it would be those people that think that going out with wet hair will make you sick.  Being out in the heat and coming in to the AC won't increase your chances of getting sick anymore than blow drying those locks before taking a foot outside in the freezing cold.  Sickness comes from bacteria and germs.  Period.  Air conditioned air and wet hair don't increase the amounts of bacteria and germs... so you're safe to be around both.

8.  Salt water can heal a cut.  I did hear this once when I was at the beach.  Being in the salt water will help any cuts you have on your body.  While clean salt water can help clean out cuts and scrapes - the ocean is a cesspool of germs and bacteria.  That's the last place you want to dip in to if you have an open wound.  

9.  Butter eases sunburn.  That has to be a southern thing, right?  I mean, I'm not sure if anyone knows what happens to butter when you put it in a hot skillet - but I know that it sizzles and starts to burn.  Not the affect I want to get on my sunburn!  Unless you plan on frying an egg or making pancakes on that sunburnt back of yours... don't use butter!

10.  Poison Ivy is contagious.  And to think, all those times I've ran from students and people who walk around with poison ivy rashes.  For no reason whatsoever.  You can only get poison ivy from the resin off the plant.  If someone still has it on their clothes or skin you can get the rash, but if it's not... there's no danger being around the rash and/or blisters.  Good to know.  Hopefully I won't offend anymore people by screaming like a mad woman if I see the faintest hint of poison ivy.  

11. Getting a base tan prevents sunburn.  I couldn't believe this one was a myth.  My whole life I've believed that once I've got my first tan of the summer.. I was good to go for the rest of the time.  Which I unfortunately learned the hard way yesterday.  I've had a pretty nice tan going for a couple of weeks, now.  My shoulders, arms, and face are beautifully bronzed.  I thought I was good to go with just adding on to my browness.  That was until I got home yesterday and saw redness on my shoulders, neck, and forehead.  Totally sucks!

12. You should shower soon after swimming in a pool to remove bacteria and prevent skin dryness.  This one I've heard since basically growing up, because I've spent most of my life around a pool.  I remember often pleading with my mother to let me hold off on my shower because I just swam in the pool.  She would quickly retort that swimming is not a replacement for a shower...and I'm still dirty.  Pools are supposed to have high chlorine levels in order to kill bacteria.  That is the job of the chlorine.  That's why there is chlorine added to drinking water.  And while chlorinated water isn't the best treatment for your skin, it can help with issues such as acne and oily skin.  While I don't intend on using my pool as my new bath tub, I'm not going to feel so inclined to jump in the shower within minutes of getting out of the pool.  I can also attest to the fact that my usually oily face hasn't been glistening so much since swimming every day.  It's actually looking much better than it has in a very long time.  Now, I'm not preaching that if you're a daily swimmer that you can ditch your nightly shower... but I am saying that waiting until morning to shower isn't going to kill you, either.

And there you have it.  Twelve summer time myths.  Fun, right?

Now it's time for me to go to work.



  1. I've always read that if you're tan, you might look good, but you basically have "damaged skin." Did the article mention that? And that damaged skin eventually wrinkles -- and not just the skin on your face. This one I know for a fact -- I never ever thought that my lovely summer tans would result in wrinkles on my arms!!! And chest!!! I have very few regrets in life, but I really regret all that time I spent "working" on a tan!

    1. It did mention something about it in the article...but with the butter curing sunburn myth. It just said that to avoid additional skin damage, to use aloe vera gel for moisture and soothing.

      I've never really been one to work on a tan.. but I'm not going to lie - I'm loving the color of my skin right now from being outside too much. It's not from laying out, it's from being outside working and playing. I might grumble when I'm older about the state of my skin, but I can't see me ever grumbling about what fun I went through (or hard work) to get it... HA!


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