Fun in the sun…
To prevent sunburn:
- The best line of defense against harmful ultraviolet radiation (UVR) is to avoid sun exposure by covering up. Stay in the shade whenever possible, and limit sun exposure during the peak intensity hours – between 10 a.m. and 4 p.m.
- Wear a hat and sunglasses (look for sunglasses that provide 97% -100% protection against both UVA and UVB rays).
- On both sunny and cloudy days use a sunscreen with an SPF 15 or greater that protects against UVA and UVB rays.
- Be sure to apply enough sunscreen — about one ounce per application for a young adult.
- Reapply sunscreen every two hours, and after swimming or sweating.
- The intensity of activities that last 15 minutes or more should be reduced whenever high heat or humidity reach critical levels.
- Before outdoor physical activities, children should drink water often. During activities less than one hour, water alone is fine. Kids should always have water or a sports drink available and take a break to drink every 20 minutes while active in the heat.
- Clothing should be light-colored and lightweight and limited to one layer of absorbent material to facilitate evaporation of sweat.
- Practices and games played in the heat should be shortened and there should be more frequent water/hydration breaks. Children should promptly move to cooler environments if they feel lightheaded or nauseated.
Infants and small children are not able to regulate their body temperature in the same way that adults do. Every year, children die from from being left in a hot car, often unintentionally, with the majority of these deaths occurring in children 3 and under.
- Always check the back seat to make sure all children are out of the car when you arrive at your destination.
- Avoid distractions while driving, especially cell phone use.
- Be especially aware of kids in the car when there is a change from the routine, ie. someone else is driving them in the morning, or you take a different route to work or child care.
- Have your childcare provider call if your child has not arrived within 10 minutes of the expected arrival time.
- Place you cell phone, bag or purse in the back seat, so you are reminded to check the back seat when you arrive at your destination.
- The inside of a car can reach dangerous temperatures quickly, even when the outside temperature is not hot. Never leave a child alone in a car, even if you expect to come back soon. Lock your car when it is parked so children cannot get in without supervision.
If someone is suffering from heat stress move them into the shade or an air conditioned area. Lay the person down and raise their legs and feet slightly. Remove tight or heavy clothing. If you suspect heat stroke, seek medical attention immediately.
Water & Pool safety:
- Never leave children alone in or near water, even for a moment; close supervision by a responsible adult is the best way to prevent drowning in children.
- Less experienced swimmers and children under age 5 in or around water should have an adult – preferably one who knows how to swim and perform CPR.
- Never swim alone.
- Because drowning can be quick and quiet, you need to keep a close on on children.
- Install a fence at least 4 feet high around all four sides of the pool. The fence should not have openings or protrusions that a young child could use to get over, under, or through.
- Make sure pool gates open out from the pool, and self-close and self-latch at a height children cannot reach. Consider alarms on the gate to alert you when someone opens the gate.
- The safest fence is one that surrounds all four sides of the pool and completely separates the pool from the house and yard. If the house serves as the fourth side of the fence, install an alarm on the exit door to the yard and the pool. For additional protection, install window guards on windows facing the pool. Drowning victims have also used pet doors to gain access to pools. Keep all of your barriers and alarms in good repair with fresh batteries.
- Keep rescue equipment (a shepherd’s hook – a long pole with a hook on the end — and life preserver) and a portable telephone near the pool. Choose a shepherd’s hook and other rescue equipment made of fiberglass or other materials that do not conduct electricity.
- Children should wear life vests at all times when on boats, docks or near bodies of water. There should always be a life jacket in the boat for each individual.
- Make sure the life jacket is the right size for your child. The jacket should not be loose and should always be worn as instructed with all straps belted.
- Never swim alone. Even good swimmers need buddies!