With the warming of the weather and the start of normalization after COVID-19, people have started to spend more time outside. However, the concept of UV (Ultraviolet) Index and methods of protection from solar radiation began to come to the fore more. What is the UV Index in this content? What are the Degrees and Effects? We have compiled answers to questions such as:
What is UV Index (UVI)?
The UV Index, or Ultraviolet Index, known as UVI for short, is an international standard scale that indicates the amount of ultraviolet radiation emitted by the sun, reaching the earth and affecting human health negatively. According to the General Directorate of Meteorology, this scale is on a scale of 0-15 and 1 UVI = 0,025 W/m2.
The UV Index was first developed by Canadian scientists in 1992, and then it was standardized by the World Health Organization (WHO) and the World Meteorological Organization in 1994 and actively applied.
You can also see the UV index in weather applications on almost every smartphone. The higher the UV Index, the greater the damage to humans by the sun's rays. For this reason, if we are exposed to sun rays when the sun is at its highest, that is, when the UVI is highest, and we use sunscreen, etc. If we do not use protection methods, painful burns occur on our skin.
Although the level of UV radiation varies during the day, it is at its highest between 12.00:14.00 and 11.00:15.00. Of course, experts warn that it should not be exposed to the sun for a long time, usually between XNUMX:XNUMX and XNUMX:XNUMX in the summer months.
Variation of UV index by Regions
UV Index can reach very high values during the day throughout the year in regions close to the equator line. According to the World Health Organization data, the ultraviolet (UV) level in Nairobi, the capital of Kenya, is 10 and above throughout the year.
In our country, this value is between 9-10 in the Mediterranean region.
UV Index Value and Rating
|UV Index Value||UV Index Rating||Meaning|
|<2||Low||A value between 0-2 is in the low risk range. In this range, the sun's rays are not very harmful.|
|3 – 5||Orta||This range is medium risk level and you can stay under the sun for 20 minutes. However, it is recommended to use a hat and sunglasses.|
|6 – 7||High||When you stay under the sun radiation with this index value, which is in the high risk range, for more than 15 minutes, your skin may start to burn. To prevent skin burns, hats and sunglasses should be worn and the face should be protected with creams.|
|8 – 10||Very High||Especially in the southern parts of our country, such UV values are seen in summers and it is not recommended to spend more than 10 minutes unprotected under the radiation of these values. Protective creams, hats and sunglasses should be used. These values are usually seen between 11.00:15.00 and XNUMX:XNUMX in the summer, so experts always warn to stay in the shade during these intervals.|
|11+||Extreme||This value is the level with the highest risk for living things. You should not stay under the sun for more than 5 minutes and should not go out unless it is necessary.|
Why is Ultraviolet UV Dangerous?
It is a known fact that we need sunlight for our body to synthesize vitamin D. However, long-term exposure to UV rays easily causes sunburn, especially in fair-skinned people. Of course, this is the least inconvenience. Experts warn that UV radiation can cause skin cancer and eye cataracts.
Experts also point out that the amount of UV on the skin does not depend on the air temperature, and even in April, in a clear and slightly windy weather, the UV level can be the same as in August.
For these reasons, the UV Index should also be checked when looking at weather conditions. You should check this index from the weather applications on smart phones and go out by taking the necessary precautions. In particular, hats, umbrellas, sunglasses and high factor sunscreens are the most effective measures.
As can be seen in the image below, fair-skinned people should use higher factor sunscreens.
How Should We Protect Against Ultraviolet, ie UV?
You can take the following precautions to reduce the damage caused by the sun's rays to the skin and other parts of the body.
- You should not go outside unless it is mandatory during the hours when the UV Index is high and the sun is at its highest. Even if you go out, be careful not to stay in the sun for long periods.
- Be sure to wear a hat and sunglasses. Regularly apply high factor sunscreen to the exposed part of your body. (This is especially important for those with fair skin and sensitive skin.)
- Experts warn that diseases such as cataracts, cancer and snow blindness may occur in those who are exposed to UV rays for a long time. For this reason, it is very important to wear sunglasses.