Kids love a trip to the park, but the playground also has some potential dangers to watch out for. By taking precautions and teaching your child park safety, you can prevent a potentially serious injury.
Before you head to the park, check out what your child is wearing. Anything baggy or loose, such as strings on a sweatshirt or dangling jewelry, can get stuck on playground equipment and potentially cause strangulation. She should also wear stable shoes that stay on her feet so they are protected from sharp objects.
On sunny days, take steps to protect your child from sunburn. Apply sunscreen before you head to the park. Put a hat on her to keep the sun off of her face.
Scope It Out
Another way to keep your child safe is to scope out the park before she starts playing. Look for any damaged equipment that could cut her or cause her to get caught. Have her avoid those areas. Make sure there is no trash or sharp objects on the playground. Also watch for suspicious activity or strange people who don’t seem to belong at the park.
On hot days, check out the play equipment. Any playground material can get very hot when in direct sunlight, even plastic. Touch the equipment with your hand to see if it is too hot before your child goes down it to avoid a burn.
Young kids need constant supervision at the park. Stay close to where your child is playing. This allows you to stop any unsafe behavior she does before she gets hurt. For example, if she climbs on top of a railing or leans too far over the edge, you can stop her right away before she falls.
Supervision is also important in protecting your child from other people. Older kids can sometimes do potentially dangerous things or say things you don’t want your kids to hear. A potential abductor could also use the park as a way to find victims. Always keep your child within your sight so you can keep her safe.
Teach your child to use playground equipment safely the way it was intended to be used. Set rules about things like only going down the slide and not climbing up it or keeping a safe distance when someone swings. Remind your child to never push when on playground equipment. Teaching these behaviors and expecting your child to follow them can reduce the risk of playground injuries significantly.