A hat is not only about fashion, but also about sun safety — in the summers especially. Outdoor workers — whether weekend gardeners, stone masons, crossing guards, or carpenters — should always wear a sun-protective hat as a simple and effective strategy for reducing ultraviolet radiation to the face, head, and neck as well as avoiding sun stroke.

Sunstroke, also referred to as a heat stroke, can occur when the body is unable to sufficiently cool itself and can result in brain damage or death. People at the greatest risk for heat stroke include infants, young children, people 65 or older, and those with certain medical conditions such as high blood pressure or heart disease. The Centers for Disease Prevention and Control outlines these warning signs and symptoms of heat-related illness:

  • High body temperature (above 103°F)*
  • Hot, red, dry or moist skin
  • Rapid and strong pulse
  • Possible unconsciousness

These symptoms add up to an emergency, requiring immediate medical attention. So in order to defend yourself against these dangers, simply throw on a hat!