As the end of the school year approaches, many families are beginning to plan their vacations. Staying healthy and safe during your summer plans will make all the difference in the world of whether you’ll make wonderful summer memories. Here’s a list of 10 summer travel health tips for kids:
Staying Protected From Sunburn
It’s always fun in the sun. However, sunburn could be a factor, and if it is, here are some tips to keep you safe.
- The American Academy of Pediatrics says the best defense against ultraviolet radiation (UVR) exposure is to cover up, or to avoid the sun all together. To prevent sunburn for infants, dress in lightweight, long pants and a long sleeved shirt. For older children, wear a hat with a brim or bill, sunglasses that provide 97% to 100% protection from UVA/UVB rays, and tight-weaved clothing.
- If adequate clothing and shade are not available, apply a small amount of sunscreen with at least 15 SPF to areas more prone to sunburning. If your child does get sunburned, apply cold compresses to the affected areas.
Keeping Cool and Staying Hydrated
Traveling in the summer heat can be a challenge for kids and it can also be dangerous. Here’s some tips to keep your child safe.
- Fruits and veggies contain 70 to 95 percent water. Watermelon, strawberries, cucumbers and lettuce are the best fruits and vegetables to consume in the summer heat.
- From Parenting Magazine: Freeze cups of applesauce or have sweet, frozen cucumber pops as a traveling treat.
Pack a Travel Snack
Everyone loves snacking while traveling. Here’s two quick and easy snacks that are both healthy and perfect for on the go.
From the Cooking Light website:
- Sweet-Tooth Mix – 2 cups pretzel sticks, 2 cups Multigrain Cheerios, 1 cup mini marshmallows, 1/2 cup milk chocolate M&M’s, 1/2 cup raisins 1/2 cup mix = 106 calories, 1.1g fiber
- Crunch-Crunch-Crunch Mix – 1/2 cup dried cherries, 2 cups whole-grain Rice Chex, 1/2 cup roasted unsalted pistachios, 3 cups Kashi Go Lean Crunch Cereal 1/2 cup mix = 119 calories, 3.3g fiber
Being Prepared for Summer Allergies
As summer temperatures rise so does the pollen count, and that’s no fun for those who suffer from environmental allergies.
- Make certain to have your child’s prescribed allergy medicine on hand. If an allergy appears to develop during travels, here’s a list of temporary over the counter allergy treatments. Use as directed.
From website WebMD:
- Nasal spray decongestants (shouldn’t be used more than three days).
- Corticosteroid nasal spray (Nasacort)
- Cromolyn sodium nasal spray
- Eye drops
- Nasal irrigation
Avoiding Motion Sickness During Travel
- When traveling by car, avoid reading, watching t.v. or videos. Also, avoid sudden head movements.
If your child has symptoms of motion sickness.
- Eat a few crackers and sip on a clear carbonated drink like, ginger ale; 7 up.
Car Seats and Booster Seats
According to the website, Healthy Children, thousands of children are killed or injured in car accidents each year. So, the proper use of car seats and booster seats will help keep our children safe.
- Children from infancy to school age, typically children under the age of 12 or under 4 feet 9 inches in height, are required to be in a car seat or booster seat when being transported
- Older children should always wear their seatbelts.
Travel by Airplane
Dr. Sears at Parenting.com gave some wonderful tips for mothers with travel, age-appropriate newborns.
- Request an aisle seat and as close to the front of the plane as possible. This will give you the mobility to be able to get up to soothe your baby, if needed.
- Dr. Sears also suggests getting your child used to a sling-type baby carrier which is considered the most versatile carrier for traveling with a tiny baby. These slings enable you to carry your baby in a variety of comfortable positions and to nurse discreetly.
- It also frees up your hands for safety.
Safety Seat for Plane and Car
- The American Academy of Pediatrics suggest arranging to have a car safety seat at your destination or bring your own along. Airlines will typically allow families to bring a child’s car safety seat as an extra luggage item with no additional luggage expense.
Emergency First-Aid Kit
Having a first-aid kit is last but certainly not least when it comes to this list of travel tips. One that is well stocked is always great to have around whether at home, in the car, or carry along on a plane. Here are some important items:
- Disinfecting wipes, bandages, antibiotic get
- Sunblock spray and/or cream
- Children’s pain relievers, antihistamines
- Index cards with important information: insurance, pediatrician’s phone number, urgent care, etc.
You get the picture. Be creative and make your own. When packing for a travel, parents should always consider the storage and safety of all medications, if prescribed, and the storage and safety of breast milk, baby formula, etc.