Have a Safe and Happy Summer Summer Safety TipsAnn E. Butenas
Summertime is always such a special time. The warm, long days beckon us outside to seek adventures long hidden by the dreary winter season. The living is free and easy -- or so it seems. Despite the carefree lifestyle summer seems to bring, it is very important to realize the many safety tips we should keep in mind.
Having three preschool age boys of my own, I have the privilege of spending lots of time outside exploring the world at their level. As you can imagine, they usually scatter in different directions, leaving me frantically pursuing them before danger befalls them. I guess this has happened frequently, as one of my neighbors politely told me the other day that perhaps I should keep a more watchful eye on them. Initially, I was alarmed at her boldness in making such a comment to me, as I do try to keep my boys safe, but, unfortunately, it is difficult to maintain one pair of eyes on three little boys. Her comment made me consider some of the safety reminders we should ALL keep in mind this summer.
Here is a short list of some summer safety tips provided by the Children's Hospital and Medical Center in Seattle, Washington:
1.) Do not leave children unattended in or near the water. Be sure to use personal floatation devices on boats, docks, and near deep or fast-moving water.
2.) When riding bikes, skateboards, roller-blades, or scooters, make sure children always wear a helmet.
3.) Be sure to protect children from excessive exposure to the sun, especially between the hours of 10:00 a.m. and 2:00 p.m., when the sun's ray are at their strongest.
4.) When playing on or near playground equipment, make sure children are supervised at all times. Keep them away from the front and back of swings while they are in use.
5.) Keep children away from where lawnmowers are being used, and never allow them to ride on riding lawn mowers.
6.) To minimize the risk of insect stings, have children wear shoes and light-colored clothing. Use insect repellent minimally on young children and never on infants.
7.) Know the plants in your yard and teach children not to pick or eat anything without first checking with an adult. You can contact your local poison control center to receive a list of poisonous plants.
8.) Keep children away from barbecues and bonfires. Always have water present when fire is being used. Never let children near lighter fluid.
9.) When traveling by car or plane, be sure children are strapped in a properly fitting seat belt, car seat, or booster seat.
Some additional tips provided by Kid Source include:
1.) It is important that, depending upon the age of your child, he knows his name, phone number, address, and, if possible, have the child remember the name and phone number of a close relative or friend.
2.) Never leave a child alone in a hot car, even if only for a minute. It can be 90 degrees outside and 150 degrees inside the car.
3.) Make sunscreen part of your daily routine in the morning. Even if your child does not tend to burn, skin damage can occur. Don't forget to put some on yourself, too!
4.) Be sure your child takes swimming lessons, not only for pleasure, but for safety reasons, too.
5.) Be sure to drink plenty of fluids throughout the day, especially water. Avoid sodas, as they can dehydrate you.
6.) When supervising children playing in the pool, never turn your back. Accidents can happen in a second.
7.) Be sure to wear hats. They can protect the ears and back of the neck from sunburn. Sunglasses protect the eyes.
8.) Even though it is summer and school is not in session, be sure to maintain some semblance of a schedule and make sure children get plenty of sleep.
9.) When travelling by car on a family vacation, be sure to have on a hand a first aid kit, some water, and some non-perishable snacks. If there is room, be sure to throw in an extra set of clothing and extra diapers for those short day trips that turn into an all-day adventure!
10.) Never send your child alone to use a public restroom.
11.) Find out where local CPR classes are held and sign up with a friend. It never hurts to learn and/or refresh what we know!
12.) Does your child love to ride his bike? Make sure the helmet still fits correctly. If not, get a new one.
13.) Review sidewalk safety and driveway safety with your children. Make sure they know not to cross the street without an adult present. Even if your street is relatively traffic-free, never take for granted that a car might be coming down the road.
14.) Be aware of the symptoms of heat exhaustion. They include excessive thirst, profuse sweating, muscle cramps, vomiting, fainting, dizziness, and fatigue. The skin will usually feel cold and clammy to the touch.
By keeping these safety tips in mind, your summer should prove to be a very enjoyable and memorable season!
Ann E Butenas is a stay-at-home mom of three preschool-age boys. She has an undergraduate degree in Communications, a post-bachelor paralegal certificate, and a Master's in Business Management. She earned the latter during her first two pregnancies while running an at-home business at the same time. She has been professionally published as a writer since the age of 12.
Ann currently owns and operates ANZ Publications, a publications business specializing in family-oriented projects. Her most recent project includes a very unique medical and dental records binder.a great way to keep track of a child's complete medical history from birth through adolescence. Visit the site at http://www.anzpublications.com. ANZ is an acronym, by the way, for her son's Alec, Noah, and Zach. It is pronounced as "Ann's," for her first name, but spelled as such to include the boys!
Her website showcases her new book.
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