As summer approaches, it’s essential to keep your children safe while they enjoy the sun and water. As a summer camp director who specializes in child safety and adolescent development, I’ve seen the importance of sun and water safety practices firsthand. Here are five tips to help keep your children safe this summer:
- Sunscreen is Your Best Friend
Sunscreen is a must for children when they are out in the sun. Look for a sunscreen with an SPF of 30 or higher, and apply it 15 minutes before your child goes outside. Reapply every two hours, or more frequently if your child has been swimming or sweating. Don’t forget to apply sunscreen to your child’s ears, nose, and the tops of their feet, as well as any other exposed skin.
- Stay Hydrated
Drinking plenty of water is essential, especially when it’s hot outside. Make sure your child has access to water throughout the day and encourage them to drink frequently. If your child is playing sports or running around, they will need to drink more water than usual. Consider packing a refillable water bottle for them to take with them.
- Dress for the Weather
Make sure your child is dressed appropriately for the weather. On hot, sunny days, choose lightweight, light-colored clothing that covers their skin as much as possible. Don’t forget to pack a hat and sunglasses to protect their eyes and face from the sun.
- Know the Signs of Heat Stroke
Heat stroke is a serious condition that can happen when a person’s body temperature rises too high. Symptoms include a high body temperature, rapid heartbeat, headache, dizziness, and confusion. If your child is experiencing any of these symptoms, move them to a cooler area and give them water to drink. If their symptoms don’t improve or get worse, seek medical attention immediately.
- Never Leave Children Unattended in or Near Water
Drowning is a leading cause of accidental death among children, so it’s essential to supervise them whenever they are in or near water. Whether it’s a pool, lake, or ocean, children should never be left alone. Make sure your child wears a life jacket if they are not a strong swimmer, and teach them basic water safety skills like how to float and tread water.
By following these sun and water safety practices, you can help ensure your child has a fun and safe summer. Remember, prevention is key, so make sure your child is prepared for any outdoor activity they may participate in.