Beat the heat
The summer sun can suck the life right out of your kids, so while it's great to get outdoors every day, there are a few simple things families can do to play safe.
Stay hydrated! Infants and children up to 4 years old are among those with the highest risk of heat stroke or heat exhaustion. Make sure they're drinking lots of water! And while older children love to play outside and splash in the pool, they may not think to stop and ask for a drink or rest in the shade every now and then.
Beat the heat! Dress children in loose, light weight clothing, wide brimmed hats and UV protection sunglasses. Apply sunscreen on your child at least 15 to 30 minutes before going outside and re-apply every two hours, or after swimming. If your child is in care, ask teachers to apply sunscreen before any outdoor activities. Kids (and pets!) are at high risk for heat illnesses or death if left in a hot car, even if the windows are cracked and even if it's only for a few minutes. Never leave a child unattended in a car.
Gear up! Insist your children wear proper-fitting helmets when riding bikes and knee and elbow pads for skateboards and scooters. Brain injuries are estimated to be prevented by proper helmet wear by 85 percent.
Swim safe! Water sources of any kind are a potential drowning hazard, especially for young children and weak swimmers. Even if your child is a good swimmer, boat safety means fitting them with an appropriate sized life jacket. Never leave a child unsupervised when around water.
Got an itch? Summer brings out the creepy-crawlies so be prepared for bee stings, wasps and ticks. Check your child's body for ticks, especially if you have been camping or playing in grassy, brushy or wooden areas. Have your child wear long sleeve shirts and long pants with high socks and boots. Tuck your child's pant legs into his socks and use a tick repellent. And don't forget about poison ivy! Learn to identify types of rashes and standard over-the-counter treatments.