With summer in full swing, it is a good time to review some simple safety tips. According to the American Academy of Pediatrics, these categories are the most important to consider. Be aware that when your children are visiting another family, they may have different attitudes and levels of supervision from yours. A conversation before leaving your children is always a good idea.
While a fun addition to any summer get together, please keep in mind that fireworks cause thousands of structural fires each year as well as visits to the emergency rooms. Fireworks should only be purchased from a licensed store and supervised by an adult. Everyone should have safety glasses on and alcohol should be saved for after the show.
Every year seems to bring a new kind of safety warning about bugs. The best thing you can do for your child is keep them covered in bug spray for the duration of their time outside. Remember to especially cover their shoes, socks and bottom rim of their shorts. Never spray bug spray on the face or in the eyes. Bathe the child before bed so he is not sleeping in bug spray.
Try choosing playgrounds with equipment that is not old and rusty and has a substance covering the ground underneath that is somewhat impact-absorbing. As children are quick to get creative with whatever equipment is offered to them, keeping your eyes on them as you visit with friends is a must. Make sure they are not putting their head where it does not belong placing them in danger of strangulation. Also watch that the children are each taking turns and not all trying to swing on one swing, for example.
A helmet is a must here. No matter how close the children are staying to home or how well they ride, statistics show that a bicycle helmet can reduce head injury risk by 85 percent according to the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS).
Not always thought of as a major risk to young people, remember that lawnmowers have very sharp blades that spin very fast. A child should never for any reason reach his hand under a lawnmower. Further, the danger of things being spit out from under the mower, such as a tree branch, with a very fast trajectory can be equally damaging. It is best to keep kids inside while dad is mowing. Additionally, riding lawn mowers should only be operated by adults.
Skateboards and scooters
While wheels are fun, they can quickly put children in harm’s way if they roll down your driveway and into the street. Again helmets are an excellent idea for anything with wheels on it. Younger drivers especially are still learning to negotiate turns and distances so taking them some place safe to ride around is your best option.
For some families, this is not a threat at all. For others it is a constant source of concern. If you or your neighbor have a swimming pool, there should be a fence with a gate around it. If you live near a body of water consider having locks on your doors high and out of reach of the children in order to keep them in and safe. Weight-appropriate life jackets are a must and for younger children, they should wear them at all times when around water.