- Choose a sunscreen that provides UVA/UVB (Broad spectrum) coverage.
- Reapply sunscreen every 2 hours if out in the sun or every 40-80 minutes when in the water (depending on what your sunscreen says).
- Choose a sunscreen that has an SPF between 15-50.
- Wear sunglasses, hats, and protective clothing to help defend against the sun’s rays.
- Remember, sun screen is not liquid clothes – seek shade when possible.
- On the slopes? Wear sunscreen and sunglasses to protect your face and eyes from the bright, reflective, sun/snow combo.
- Don’t forget your lips! Use a lip balm or chap stick with an SPF of at least 15.
- Want to look tan? Get a spray tan or use sunless tanning lotion.
To learn more, check out the American Cancer Society.
Sexual Health Tips
- Need emergency contraception? While using a regular form a contraception is the best choice, using emergency contraception multiple times will NOT cause infertility and is NOT an abortion pill. Here are two options:
- Ella emergency contraception is approved for use up to 5 days after unprotected sex or birth control failure. It can be obtained through a prescription and is offered at Schiffert for $30.
- Plan B emergency contraception is approved for use up to 72 hours after unprotected sex or birth control failure. It is more effective the sooner you take it. This can be purchased over-the-counter. Schiffert sells Plan B for $25.
- Condoms help protect against some STIs and pregnancy. 24 packs are available at Schiffert for $5.
- Pack and store condoms in a safe place – avoid places with sharp edges, extreme temperatures, and anyplace that decreases the integrity of the package and/or condom.
- If you do have a new sexual partner, protect yourself by using a condom.
- Always get and give consent if you are in a sexual situation. This means a clear and sober "yes."
- Avoid mixing alcohol and sex – it makes saying no, using birth control and condoms more difficult.
- Sex with multiple partners increases your risk of contracting an STI. Here is a list of STI testing services available at Schiffert
- Avoid skin to skin contact with mouth and/or genital areas that have visible bumps or sores; that’s genital to genital and mouth to genital contact.
- Know that even if you are using condoms and there are no visible symptoms, an STI can still be present.
- HPV (the virus that causes genital warts and cervical cancer) is the most common STI among college students. Be sure to complete the Gardasil vaccine series to insure maximum protection.
- Want more info? Here are some great resources
- Play Safely. To avoid injury, alcohol should not be combined with intense, high-exertion or high-skill activities. Some spring break specific examples may include skiing, snow-boarding, water skiing, and jet skiing.
- Don’t drink and drive a car, scooter, or bike.
- In a jam-packed day, it can be easy to forget meals. However, eating before and while drinking is a must-have if alcohol is in your plans. Eating prior to consumption helps you avoid dangerous and unpleasant spikes in blood alcohol level because alcohol is being digested and absorbed at a steadier and slower pace.
- In hot temperatures, hydrating before and while drinking becomes even more important. Alcohol is a diuretic and can actually affect your body’s capability to regulate its internal temperature. By drinking water before and between drinks, you will help prevent dangerous dehydration and it will naturally pace your consumption as well.
- Did you know that drinking in unfamiliar environments can actually affect your tolerance to alcohol? When you drink in new places, your experience of alcohol’s effects can be heightened, affecting judgement and coordination. Take it slow and always remember to choose if, when, and what you drink with your personal well-being in mind.
What happens on spring break might not always stay on spring break
The departments in the Division of Student Affairs are here to provide support and services to all Virginia Tech students. While spring break is meant to be a week of fun, challenges may arise that are brought back to campus, making the remainder of the semester a struggle. Here is a list of specific services and links to explore.
- Hokie Wellness – Alcohol and Other Drug Education
- Hokie Wellness – Healthy Hokie Workshops
- Cook Counseling Center
- Dean of Students Office
- Schiffert Health Center
- The Women’s Center (part of the Provost’s office)
- If in a foreign country, avoid getting a tattoo or body piercing. Even in the US, it is important to research the safety and reputation of the establishment before becoming a patron.
- Drink safely. Adequate hydration is always important while in the sun, on the slopes, doing physical labor, or drinking alcohol. If you are drinking water abroad, be sure it is safe to drink from the local water supply in that country. If not, be sure it comes from a sealed bottle and avoid ice. If drinking alcohol, watch their drink being made and never leave it unattended.
- Always use the buddy system. Friends can (often) keep you accountable and safer in many situations.
- Always wear a seatbelt.
- Don’t drive if you are tired, and switch drivers or take frequent breaks.
- Take a break from social media to fully relax and enjoy your surroundings.
- Know the emergency numbers for the area in which you are staying.
- Protect yourself from mosquito bites in areas where mosquito borne diseases exist. https://www.cdc.gov/zika/prevention/prevent-mosquito-bites.html