We are coming into the dog days of summer, where it gets hotter and hotter by the day. This is a fun time for children to go outside and enjoy the many outdoor activities of summer. But with summer fun come some summer bummers. Heat exhaustion, sun burns, and more are a cause for concern for many parents in the summer months. Keep reading to hear our helpful tips on how to keep your little ones safe and healthy for the summer.
Sunscreen. It probably can’t be said enough, but sunscreen is a huge priority for hot summer days outside. Research has shown time and again the damaging effects of the sun, and every child no matter how old or how unlikely they are to burn can suffer from the effects of the sun’s rays. The CDC recommends sunscreen that protects from both UVA and UVB rays and with a minimum SPF of 15.
Bug spray. Another huge concern is mosquito and other insect bites. Some of these bugs can be more than just annoying; they can carry harmful diseases. Protect your little ones with plenty of bug spray applied frequently throughout the day.
Stay hydrated. When your kids are running around outside and exerting themselves in the heat, they can quickly become dehydrated. Most children don’t notice how much water they are sweating out and it is easy for them to become prone to dehydration. Make sure they’re drinking plenty of water or electrolyte-based drinks prior to going outside and several times throughout the day.
Appropriate clothing. Make sure your kids are well equipped for lots of time outdoors with light and loose clothing. Athletic wear and sweat-wicking clothing is also helpful for children who are very active and prone to get hot. Closed-toed, sturdy and/or athletic grip shoes are also important for keeping your child safe. Helmets are important for children who ride bikes, skateboards, scooters, etc.
Limit time outside or in the pool. Another thing children don’t realize when they’re outside all day is how long they have been exposed to the sun or chlorine or a combination of both. Being in a pool for long hours can be harmful because the water has a magnifying effect for the sun. Staying in the water all day also gives the false impression that they are hydrated. Make sure your kids take a break from the pool and sun and get cooled down and hydrated before going outside again.
Keep a watchful eye. Especially in the summer where kids tend to wander off for long periods of time or spend time in the pool, it’s important to keep an eye out for them. Having adult supervision at all times is the number one way to keep kids safe in the summer. Even if your child can swim well on their own, make sure an adult supervises pool time to prevent drowning or other accidents.