6 Summer Safety Tips for Kids

June 17, 2020

sun protection - mother put sunblock cream on little daughter face; blog: 6 Summer Safety Tips for Kids

Kids love that summer brings lots of opportunities for fun in the sun. However, parents need to be aware of certain things so kids can be safe and healthy all season long. Here are some helpful summer safety tips to keep in mind and help you make the most of this season:

1. Practice Sun Safety

Sunburn is a pain and can cause damage year-round. Because kids spend more time outside during the summer, they are exposed to the sun more often. Sunburn can lead to skin damage and other health problems down the line. Even if you don’t see a sunburn, unprotected skin can be damaged by sun exposure.

  •  Always use sunscreen and reapply it often.
  • Use a sunscreen with an SPF of at least 15 and UVA & UVB protection every time your child goes outside.
  • Cover you and your child’s skin with lightweight clothing or sit in the shade.
  • Use sunglasses to protect kids’ eyes from harsh sunlight.

2.     Stay Safe in the Water

Keeping kids safe in the water is a huge priority during the summer. If you’re going to spend time around the water, a crucial summer safety tip is to learn how to recognize the signs of drowning. Learn safety procedures and be prepared to act in a worst-case scenario. Other steps to ensure water safety include:

  • Children should be supervised at all times when they’re in or around the water. A responsible adult needs to be constantly watching children even if there is a lifeguard on duty.
  • Learn CPR and make sure you refresh your skills frequently.
  • Teach kids to swim. Getting formal swimming lessons from a certified instructor can help reduce the risk of drowning.
  • Kids should wear life jackets in and around natural bodies of water even if they can swim. Life vests are also a good idea at the pool for children who are not strong swimmers.

3. Learn About Staying Safe in the Heat

Temperatures climb during the summer months. To keep your kids safe in the heat, learn the warning signs of heat-related illnesses. If you recognize these signs in your child or yourself, get medical help immediately. Some ways to prevent overheating and heat-related illness include:

  • Dress yourself and your children in cool, lightweight clothing. Light colors may keep you cooler and attract less heat.
  • Cool off by swimming (using the safety tips above) or taking cool baths and showers.
  • Schedule outdoor activities in the mornings or evenings when temperatures are at their lowest.
  • NEVER leave babies, children, or pets in parked cars. Even if you leave the windows cracked, a car can quickly heat up to dangerous or even fatal temperatures.

4.  Keep Everyone Hydrated

Hydration is a critical part of keeping safe and healthy all year, but it’s even more important for summer safety when kids are sweating more because of the heat and increased physical activity when they play outdoors. Keep kids hydrated with frequent water breaks. Your child probably will not think to stop playing to hydrate, so you’ll need to remind them to do so to avoid dehydration. Make sure they drink enough even if they say they’re not thirsty, because thirst may be a sign that they’re already slightly dehydrated.

5. Don’t Forget About Insect Safety

Bugs can come out in full force during the summer months. Not only are they annoyances that can cause irritating bites, but some may carry diseases. The most common disease-carrying insects are ticks and mosquitos. Ticks can carry Lyme Disease among other things and mosquitos may carry West Nile Virus, Zika, and other viruses.

  • Use insect repellant or bug spray.
  • Make sure there is no standing water around your yard or house. Pools of stagnant water in buckets, pots, or other containers are breeding grounds for mosquitos.
  • When possible, dress your child in long sleeve shirts and pants when outside in areas where large numbers of mosquitos or other insects may be present. Lightweight clothing with SPF-rating can double as both sun and insect protection.

6. Be Safe During Playtime

Kids love summer because they have the time to play more than they do during the school year. If your child is likely to play from sunup to sundown, make sure they use some summer safety tips for play.

  • Make sure kids wear helmets when riding a bike, skating, skateboarding, or otherwise riding a wheeled vehicle. A properly fitted helmet can prevent serious head injury, making it a crucial safety precaution.
  • Other pads for knees, wrists, and elbows can also be useful for preventing scrapes, cuts, and fractures in case of falls.
  • Make sure play equipment in your yard or at the park is safe for use.
  • Let children know it’s unsafe to play or hide in enclosed spaces like old appliances, coolers, or car trunks.

Holly Springs Pediatrics is committed to providing quality care to your kids at all times. That includes being there in uncertain times. We will always prioritize the health and safety of your family. Call our Holly Springs, NC pediatric office at (919) 249-4700 to schedule an appointment or talk to a staff member.