With the heat wave hitting all corners of the UK this week, millions of adults will be flocking to the seaside in search of sun, sea, sand and a much needed snooze. Unfortunately many are likely to end up needing medical treatment for severe burning, prickly heat or heatstroke. As seven out of ten Brits will not be practicing ‘safe sun’ and will foolhardily be going without wearing any sun cream.
A poll of 5,000 Britons conducted by Travelodge for their latest sleep report found that in sizzling temperatures adults want nothing more than a trip to the beach to relax and catch up on some Zzzzzs. This is especially common in the summer months, as high temperatures cause sleep deprivation during the night - with the average adult losing two hours of sleep per night.
Due to this craving for sleeping in the sun, a third of Brits will shun active pursuits like swimming in the sea, playing beach games and even building sand castles with their children in favour of snoozing on the sand.
Listed below are key findings from the Travelodge sleep report regarding unprotected sun-sleeping:
· Four out ten of respondents reported after taking a shoreline snooze they have woken up to find themselves severely burned.
· Thirteen per cent of coastal kippers reported they have woken up with dehydration or heat stroke
· Seventeen millions Brits have had to seek medical attention after being burned during a kip on the coast
· The average Briton has been burned four times whilst sleeping on a British beach
The sleep report also revealed a host of excuses why Brits don’t practice ‘safe sun’ in the UK which includes:
· Five out of ten adults simply forgets to wear sun cream in the heat of the moment
· A fifth of the nation naively believes the UK sun does not get hot enough to burn them
· A shocking 12% of Brits care more about getting a suntan than staying safe
Leigh McCarron, Travelodge Sleep Director said: "Our reservations data this week is showing that thousands of Brits are heading to the seaside to make the most of the heat wave. For many, the temptation of sun, sea, sand and snoozing without protection will lead to a painful encounter; such as heatstroke, severe burning or prickly heat. It’s essential that sun worshippers practice ‘safe sun’. It’s just a matter of wearing protection and drinking lots of water".
In response to these findings Travelodge’s Sleep Director has developed a three step guide to ‘safe sun’ sleeping:
1. Always make sure you wear a high factor sun cream (Minimum Factor 30) when sun bathing and try and sleep in the shade
2. Drink lots of water when sun bathing as being dehydrated and falling asleep are not a good combination
3. Set an alarm if you are planning to have forty winks whilst sun bathing just to ensure you don’t burn
Indy Rihal from the British Skin Foundation says: "The results show a worrying lack of simple awareness about staying safe in the sun. Falling asleep in the sun is something that you should certainly avoid. Just one case of sunburn can significantly increase the chance of developing skin cancer."
Respondents were also asked what factors make sleeping on the beach more relaxing, listed below are the key findings:
· The sound of lapping waves
· The smell of the sea air
· The sound of birds
· The warm weather with a gentle breeze
The report also revealed nodding off on the beach can lead to a number of other adverse consequences affecting wealth as well as health. Nearly two million Brits have woken from a peaceful sleep to find their belongings missing, losing an average of £50 worth of goods. The most popular items to be stolen are: sunglasses, mobile phones, handbags, Ipods and food.
Listed below are the top ten beach destinations Brits are hitting this week: (Data source Travelodge reservations)
8. South End on Sea
10. Great Yarmouth