Summertime can be loads of fun. It means the kids are out of school, family vacations, swimming, camping, barbecues, bike rides, road trips, and all kinds of fun in the sun. But due to the heat, water-related activities, and other factors, the summer also means an uptick in emergency room visits, drownings, heat exhaustion, and other accidents specific to the summer season. To prevent accidents and injuries this season, follow these summer safety tips.
Stay Safe Around Water
Swimming is an excellent way to stay cool and get exercise at the same time, but it can also be extremely dangerous for children and people who can’t swim. To get the most out of fun water activities, keep these tips in mind:
- Enroll children in swimming lessons and make sure they continue improving their swimming skills until they become excellent swimmers.
- Parents and caregivers must watch children closely near all bodies of water, even if they’re wearing a life jacket.
- Never let children swim without adult supervision, even if they are good swimmers.
- Always wear a properly-fitted life jacket when boating.
- When supervising children who are swimming, avoid alcohol, reading, and texting as these are distracting activities.
Be Smart in the Sun
All it takes are a few serious sunburns to increase a child’s risk of skin cancer when they get older, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). For this reason, it’s important for children and adults to be protected from ultraviolet (UV) rays. Here are some ways to practice extra caution:
- Apply sunscreen with a minimum of 15 SPF whenever you or your children go outside. Don’t forget to apply it generously 30 minutes before sun exposure.
- When possible, cover your body with pants and long sleeves to protect yourself from UV rays.
- Wear sunglasses to protect your eyes from cataracts later in life.
- Wear a hat that covers your face, head, ears, and neck. If your child prefers a baseball cap, cover unprotected areas with sunscreen.
Beat the Heat
When the body’s temperature control system becomes overloaded, the individual can suffer from heat-related illness that can be life-threatening, especially for infants and children up to the age of four. Even a healthy teenager or young adult can get sick if they participate in strenuous activity under the hot sun. The best way to avoid heat-related illness is to prevent it from happening in the first place. Here’s how:
- Never leave an infant or child in a parked car, even if the windows are cracked or rolled down.
- Dress infants and children in appropriate clothing for the weather. If it’s hot, dress them in light-colored, loose-fitting clothing.
- Schedule outdoor activities for the cooler parts of the day. Avoid doing things outside between the hours of 11:00 AM and 3:00 PM. Instead, schedule outdoor activities for the early morning or the early evening hours.
- Keep your body cool with cool showers and baths.
- If your child displays symptoms of heat-related illness, seek medical attention right away.
At Jones & Swanson, our Woodstock injury team hopes you enjoy a fun and safe summer, but if you do sustain injuries in a water or heat-related accident, contact our firm to file a claim for the compensation you deserve.