Safe Summer

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The days are getting longer, temperatures are rising and the excitement for summer is buzzing in the air. So many plans to be made and so much fun to be had, however there are a couple of hiccups that come along with this beautiful season and we need to be ready to prevent any unwanted injuries. Here are a couple areas that we need prepare for:

Swimming

Basic swimming tip can be difference between life or death when panic sets in. It is a wise idea to teach your child how to swim from a young age or to take them for swimming lessons, so that they are prepared and know what to expect and do in the water. Have a look at the Infant Swimming Resource’s Self-Rescue™ program, it is truly amazing how much heart ache can be averted if we are prepared. Also encourage and enforce the basic swimming pool rules, like no running, pushing, holding someone under water or diving in the shallow end.

Sun Protection

Skin cancer is a big concern when it comes to our children. It is very important to always apply an SPF30, even if it’s over cast and not hot outside. Try to encourage your child to wear sunglasses and a hat when outside as well, they work wonders to protect sensitive skin.

Bug Bites

With the warm weather we always anticipate the arrival of our persistent insect friends. For your older children you can make use of insect repellent (DEET free) throughout the day or at the braai at night, but just be sure to wash off at the end of the day and allow their skin to breathe. You do get kiddie friendly products on the market, but if you are not too sure for your little ones, just cover them up in light weight long sleeved clothes that are light in colour to keep the bugs away from their skin. Always have appropriate medication on hand to deal with stings and bites and be sure to keep everyone informed if your child is prone to allergies.

Hydration

It is very important as the weather gets warmer and we lose more moisture through our skin to make sure that we and our children drink a lot of water throughout the day. To stay hydrated, keep a bottle of water around so that it’s always available. Avoid dehydration and sluggishness by regularaly topping up on your water supply.

Cycling

Teach your child the rules of the road from the start as well as how to protect their body if they should get hurt. You can get a lot of info on bycicle safety that’s easy to understand and explein. Always wear a healmet as the head is one of the most important parts of the body to protect when cycling.

Allergies

Allergies can create havoc for your child over summer and make the whole experience a lot less fun. Make an appointment with your physician before the allergies get out of hand and get an action plan in place for the months to come. Prevention is better than cure.

Hot Cars

Don’t leave your child in a closed car on any summer day. Temperature rises very quickly in a matter temps rise very quickly in a matter of minutes in a stationary car. The couple of minutes you would save by leaving your child behind is not worth the risk that you are taking.

Fireworks

Fireworks can be dangerous so only allow a professional or responsible adult to handle them. Do not allow your child to play with them as anything can go wrong and they won’t know how to deal with the situation.

Poisonous plants

Be wise about the poisonous plants in your area and teach your child to steer clear of them. Always be prepared to deal with the situation when it arises, have medication on hand and know what to do.

Playground

Playgrounds are a lot of fun, but they can also be the cause of many injuries. Apply the general safety rules that your child know from school at all playgrounds and encourage your friends to do the same with their children. No pushing, hitting, kicking or running too fast. Be patient and wait your turn. With these basic principles, many injuries can prevented.

In our Kids Corner on Kingfisher FM we are working through a series on summer safety and it motivated me to share some of those ideas with you. Remember it’s not about being a stickler for rules, but rather about keeping our children safe by having the simplest things in place for when summer arrives.

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