keep-your-child-safe-during-the-summerSummertime can be children’s favorite time of the year, with fun outdoor activities ready to enjoy. This season also poses risks, however, so it’s important to be aware of them to help keep your child safe during the summer.

Water Safety

Many children enjoy playing in the water during warm months and water-related activities can be excellent ways for your child to participate in healthy physical activities. But make sure a responsible adult is always supervising your child around water. Drownings are the leading cause of death by injury for children ages 1 to 4.

Teach your child how to swim or provide him or her with swimming lessons. If you have a pool, put a four-sided safety fence around it and keep the gate locked. Learn cardiopulmonary resuscitation as a precaution that could save a life. And, if your child goes into a boat, make sure that he or she wears a proper life jacket at all times.

You can find more water safety tips in this article by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Safety In the Sun

The article also offers recommendations to help prevent your child from suffering a heat-related illness, since infants and children up to the age of 4 are most susceptible. These recommendations include never leaving your child in a parked car in the heat, even if windows are open. Dress your child in loose, lightweight, light-colored clothing. suggests that your child wear a hat with a 3-inch brim, along with sunglasses that provide 97% to 100% protection from UVA and UVB rays.

When planning outdoor activities, schedule them during the cooler morning and evening hours whenever possible. Use sunscreen even during those cooler times, with a sun protection factor of 15, and make sure that it provides both UVA and UVB protection. Apply the sunscreen even if the day is cloudy and reapply it every two hours, as well as after your child swims or plays in the water.

If your child exhibits any signs of heat-related illness, seek medical help immediately. You can find warning signs and symptoms here.

Insect Sting Protocol

Honeybees are the only insects that actually leave a stinger behind, and these can be removed by scraping the area with a credit card or your fingernail. (Pinching it can release more venom, so that action should be avoided.) Then wash the sting with soap and water. You can also apply ice to the stung area for 10 minutes. You can repeat this again every 10 minutes, as needed, and apply a mixture of baking soda and water or calamine lotion to treat any itching.

Call your doctor or 911 if your child is stung multiple times, especially if hives and swelling appear, or if your child is having difficulty breathing, complaining of dizziness or feeling faint. Also call for medical assistance if your child has previously had an allergic reaction to a sting, was stung near the mouth or has an area on the skin that appears infected.

You can find even more tips for summer safety in a previous post of Horizon Education Centers.

Horizon Summer Camp