Summer’s here and the livin’ is easy. However, summertime can also pose certain risks to your child’s health and safety. Follow these smart, helpful tips from a recent blog written by our Westchester Health Pediatrics pediatrician Mason Gomberg, MD about the summer-specific things parents need to know how to keep their children safe.
Helmets should always be worn
- Helmets should always be a requirement for any cycling, skateboarding, rollerblading, kayaking or whitewater rafting activity.
- Parents should lead by example and also wear a helmet. The head gear should be well-fitted to prevent head injuries and concussions.
- Knee pads and arm guards should also be used to prevent injuries to the extremities.
Drowning is the leading cause of death from injury in children ages 1-4
- All pools should be fenced in and an alarm system should be in place at a private home.
- There should always be parental supervision whenever any child or teen is swimming.
- If you are having a party, think about hiring a lifeguard.
- Formal swimming lessons have shown to decrease the risk of drowning and can be started between the ages of 2 and 3.
- Even though a child has a flotation device, he/she still needs to be supervised.
- Small bodies of water can also be dangerous, as well as bodies of standing water.
Burns can come from more than the sun
- Make sure there is a wide area around the grill or campfire when children are playing.
- Ashes stay hot even when the fire is out and can lead to burns if you are not careful. Also, never leave the area until all fires are out and cold.
- Children should never play on or around a lawn mower while in use. They can be burned by a hot engine or injured by the blades if they get too close or an item gets tangled under the mower. Also, an item can be flung out like a projectile.
A bit of prevention means more fun outside and less time in the doctor’s office
- The use of trampolines is another outside activity that should be supervised and an enclosure surrounding the unit will help prevent injuries.
- All parents, teens and children above the age of 6 months should use sunblock with an SPF of 15 or higher.
- Remind your children not to approach strangers, either on foot or in a car. They should be taught to run away and start screaming for help. Parental supervision is the best precaution to ward off strangers.
- With ice cream trucks roaming our streets and parks at this time of year, children need to learn not to run to the truck without looking for oncoming traffic.
- Every parent needs to teach their child not to run after a ball that goes into the street.
- Kids should always have their feet covered, especially in the street (broken glass) and on wooden decks (splintered wood).
- Open windows can be deadly. If there are no window guards, children have been know to fall out, especially from high-rise apartments or the second or third floors of single family homes.
Have a happy and healthy summer!
To read Dr. Mason Gomberg’s blog in its entirety, click here.