Health Tips, Supplemental Health

Summer Safety Tips for Fun in the Sun

08/31/2022

Summer is the perfect time to relax and recharge, but also to get out there and enjoy some adventures. From water sports to camping, fireworks to barbecues, roller skating to cycling, or any number of activities you plan to try this summer — here are some helpful tips for avoiding bugs and sunburns, beating the heat, and staying safe while having a blast outdoors.   

 

Avoid Heat Stress 

With temperatures soaring, heat exhaustion and heat stroke can sneak up on you quickly. To help you keep your cool in extremely hot conditions, experts recommend drinking water every 20 minutes1. If you’re engaging in strenuous activity outside, consider consuming drinks that replenish electrolytes.  

If you do start to feel overheated, faint, and dizzy, or are sweating excessively, stop what you’re doing right away and get to a cool place as quickly as possible. The CDC offers this helpful list of warning signs and symptoms of heat stress to look out for.  

 

Bugs Be Gone

More than an irritant, bugs can carry nasty diseases like Lyme and West Nile Virus, which they can also pass on to humans. To keep insects from ruining your summer fun, follow these useful tips. 

Avoid using scented soaps, perfumes, and hairsprays that tend to attract mosquitoes and biting bugs. And stay clear of areas where insects gather, such as collected still water, exposed food, bee and wasps’ nests, and insect-attracting vegetation. Bug repellent sprays with DEET help ward off insects, and consider keeping a bug zapper handy.  

 

Playground Protocols 

Playgrounds are popular destinations for children in the summer. Before the kids make a run for the playground, perform a quick inspection for rotted wood, worn out plastic, sharp edges, and other defects that could cause injury. Touch slide surfaces to check the temperature and prevent potential skin burns. 

 

Fireworks Safety 

Firework displays are a popular feature of summer, but fireworks at home are also a source of risk. Each year in the U.S., fireworks cause an estimated 10,000 injuries that require emergency room treatment2. Keep you and those around you safe by making sure fireworks are legal in your area, maintaining a safe distance once fireworks are lit, and not pointing fireworks directly at people. Keep a bucket of water nearby to douse fireworks that get out of control. 

 

Good Tips for Grilling  

A seemingly harmless backyard summer activity, grilling is linked to more than 10,000 home fires each year3. Make sure there’s always someone close by to supervise the barbecue and ensure children and pets keep their distance. Keep the grill safely away from the house, patio overhangs, trees, bushes, or anything that might catch fire, and never grill indoors. To avoid burn injuries, use long-handed tools, and make sure the coals are completely out when you’re done grilling. 

 

Be Water Wise   

If you’re heading out to the pool or beach this summer, know and respect your own swimming abilities as well as those in your group. Stick to spots with lifeguards on duty, and when at the beach pay close attention to potential dangers like riptides, powerful undercurrents, and rogue waves. Never turn your back to the ocean. If you’re going on a boat, see that the vessel has life vests for everyone and check the weather conditions. Make sure all passengers behave responsibly and safely while on board. 

If you’re at a pool, make sure there’s lifesaving equipment close by in case of an emergency. Avoid risky behaviors like running on the pool deck and diving head-first into the pool. Closely watch younger children and those who aren’t strong swimmers, and consider having them wear life jackets or flotation devices. If you see someone struggling in the water, notify the lifeguard immediately or throw them a life saver; don’t try to rescue them yourself. 

 

Safe Is How You Roll 

If your summer plans include bike rides, roller skating, or skateboarding, be sure to familiarize yourself with local laws and regulations that are meant to keep you and those around you safe. Be extra vigilant of vehicle traffic and pedestrians, choose bright clothes or vests for added visibility, use your hand signals for turns, and protect yourself by always wearing a helmet and proper gear. 

 

Camping and Hiking 

While enjoying the surrounding nature, learn to recognize and keep a look out for poison ivy, poison oak, and nettles that can cause painful irritation, rashes, and blisters. Wearing long pants and sleeves are a good way to protect yourself and your skin. Don’t consume any plants, berries, and mushrooms that might be poisonous. If you’re unsure, don’t touch or eat it. 

It’s also a good idea to stay clear of any wildlife you encounter outside. Animals can be unpredictable and bite out of fear or defense, and they may carry diseases.  

When camping and hiking, it’s always a smart idea to pack a first aid kit in case of any minor injuries or emergencies. Keep a close eye on campfires, have water close, and make sure the fire is completely out before leaving. 

 

Sun Protection Tips 

Summer is all about the sun. But keep in mind that the sun’s UV rays can quickly damage your skin and eyes, causing pain and discomfort, and increase the risk of skin damage and skin cancer. Slather on broad spectrum sunscreen 30 minutes before you go outside, and reapply every 2 hours — more frequently if you’re swimming or sweating. For added protection, wear a large-brimmed hat, sunglasses, long sleeves, and SPF lip balm. Remember, when the sun is blazing, the shade is your friend. 

 

Summer Storms 

Thunder and lightning can strike, even during summer. In the event of a sudden summer storm that includes lightning, head indoors for safety and wait it out. Lightning strikes on humans are rare, but it’s always better to play it safe. 

On behalf of the SureCo team, enjoy a wonderful, fun, adventurous, and healthy summer. In between excursions, know that we’re always here to answer your questions about affordable, accessible, quality healthcare. Call us at (800) 467-4898.  

 

  1. https://www.webmd.com/parenting/features/8-tips-summer-safety
  2. https://ods.od.nih.gov/factsheets/vitamind-healthprofessional/
  3. https://info.totalwellnesshealth.com/blog/summer-safety-tips
  4. https://www.redcross.org/about-us/news-and-events/news/summer-safety-tips.html

 

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