Everyone looks forward to traveling to new places during the summer and experiencing the nice weather, but there are a few things that parents need to know when it comes to health and safety for their kids this time of year. It’s not always easy to remember the ins and outs of health and safety when planning for your next vacation and that’s why I have come up with a list of the 10 most important health tips for kids.
1. Buy sunscreen that is SPF 50 or above
When it comes to summertime safety, if you are taking your kids somewhere where they will be exposed to a lot of sunlight for a long period of time, it is best to get the strongest sunscreen possible. I can remember as a kid going to the beach and getting sunburn almost immediately because my sunscreen was not strong enough. The better the sunscreen, the less likely your child will have any negative effects.
2. Have your child wear lighter color clothing
Not only does wearing lighter clothing make it easier for you to spot ticks that may have found their way onto your child, but it also ensures that they feel a lot cooler temperature wise. Dark clothing tends to trap the heat from the sunlight whereas light clothing tends to reflect it.
3. Be in close proximity of your child when they are swimming
Anything can happen in the water and that’s why you need to be close by at all times in case your child experiences distress. Be sure to learn CPR if you can before a long trip so that if the need arises you can give your child life saving help.
4. Always keep your children hydrated
It’s very easy, especially during the summer months, for a person to get dehydrated. Teach your child about the importance of drinking water regularly both before, during and after outside activity. Instruct them to head back home if they are running low so that they can refill if necessary.
5. Go to the beach when the sun is at its lowest point
Often times growing up I would visit my grandparents in South Carolina and one of the first things they taught my brother and I was about the best times to go to the beach. The sun tends to be highest around ten to three in the afternoon so it’s best to go to the beach either before or after. This will ensure that it is much cooler outside for your child and will also decrease the likelihood of sunburn as the sun will be less reflective on the water.
6. Get vaccinated before you travel
Depending on where you plan to travel it’s always a good idea to get a vaccination before you go. Some areas have different concerns apart from your native area so be sure to ask your doctor which vaccinations you and your child should get before traveling abroad.
7. Create a medical kit for your child
It’s always a good idea no matter where you are traveling in the summer to create a medical kit for your child. In it should be everything that you need to treat wounds or breaks as well as important numbers for emergency personnel near where you are staying. This will allow you to provide immediate attention to your child no matter where you are.
8. Bike safety tips
If your child likes to travel by bike you will need to make sure that they wear bright or fluorescent colors that are easily visible to other drivers. If you’re worried about your child overheating during the summertime you should also consider purchasing a helmet that is well ventilated and a drink holder for their bike. This ensures that your child stays cool and also ensures that they are prepared when they need something to drink.
9. Choose your insect repellants carefully
While many repellants like DEET have been tried and tested for use on kids and have passed it is still important to limit the concentration. For this reason, when selecting DEET as a repellant make sure that the total concentration is between ten and thirty percent.
10. Dealing with insect bites and stings
In the case of a bee sting, search for the stinger and if none can be located run your child’s effected area under ice cold water for a minute. As this is occurring create a paste from baking soda and water and after drying your Child’s injury place the baking soda onto the stung area. The baking soda will help to pull out the venom. If your child experiences itching or pain from an insect bite give them an antihistamine and contact your doctor to be sure that it is not a more serious problem.