The season for sun-lovers and fans of long days spent grilling out or going for a dip in the pool is here! Summer is a nostalgic season marked by fun, lighthearted activities and get-togethers, that usually take place outside, making it a great season for COVID-19-conscience gatherings, but the exposure to UV rays from the sun, along with certain aspects of quintessential summer activities, present certain dangers. We’ve compiled some of our best tips and tricks for staying safe while enjoying the season!
With the warm weather, we’re looking forward to swapping our Pelotons for the real thing and hitting the road!
5 steps for better biking
1.. Level the helmet on your head about two finger-widths above your eyebrows and buckle the chin strap for a snug fit.
2.. Ride on the designated bike trails or in areas with little to no traffic.
3. Make certain others, especially motorists can see you at all times.
4. Make sure all parts are in working order and that tires are properly inflated.
5. Remain alert and aware of other cyclists, motorists and pedestrians. Use hand signals and always bike on the right side of the road.
If running’s more your speed, we’ve got some tips for you too!
Running in the Heat
When running in the heat ensure you:
- Apply a water-resistant sunscreen
- Opt for a shady route
- Hydrate before and after
- Wear lightweight, loose-fitting clothing
- Run early in the morning
Quite possibly, the most popular summer pastime is swimming! A lazy day at the pool, lake or ocean can easily turn into the highlight of your summer if you follow these safety tips:
Swim Safely This Summer
- Start swim lessons for children after age 1.
- Appoint an adult supervisor who swims and knows CPR.
- Use U.S. Coast Guard-approved life jackets and ring floats.
- Put toys away once swimming is done.
- Keep pools covered when not in use; remove detachable steps and ladders.
- Enclose pools with four-sided fencing at least four feet high; install self-closing/self-latching entry gates that open out.
Boating is another summer favorite! Whether on the ocean or at the lake, a fun boat day can become dangerous if the proper precautions aren’t taken. Follow these six tips to ensure your next boat trip is one for the memory books:
6 Tips for Boating Safety
1. Set sail with household members only.
2. Provide U.S. Coast Guard-approved life jackets to all aboard.
3. Don’t raft up to or pull close to other boats.
4. Wash hands frequently with soap and water or hand sanitizer.
5. Carry flares, navigation light, horn, whistle and a first aid kit.
6. Pack at least two communication devices that work when wet.
When the Fourth of July rolls around, many of us will take in the firework shows outside, but while we enjoy the celebrations of our independence, it’s imperative to make sure pets are safe and taken care of as well. According to tagg.com, More pets run away on the Fourth of July than on any other day of the year.
Tips to Keep Your Pet Safe on the Independence Day:
- Ensure your dog gets plenty of exercise during the day before the fireworks begin.
- Make sure your dog has a collar and ID tag.
- Provide a safe place for them to retreat like their crate or bed and check on them every few hours.
- Keep your pets indoors, lower blinds and close the windows so they won’t be frightened by the noise and bright lights.
It’s easy to work up an appetite after spending some time outside in the heat. Before gassing up the grill, check out these grilling safety tips:
Grilling Safety Tips
- Only use grills outdoors away from your home, deck and low-hanging structures.
- Keep children and pets at least three feet away from grilling areas.
- Clean grills before use.
- Never leave lit grills unattended.
- Gas grills: Always open the lid before lighting.
- Charcoal grills: Never add charcoal starter fluid once coals have been ignited.
While all these outdoor activities are fun, exciting sources of entertainment during the summer months, it’s important to remember heatstroke and heat exhaustion are common. Here’s how you tell the difference between the two and what to do if you experience either:
Heat Exhaustion vs. Heatstroke
Signs of heat exhaustion
- Dizziness and headache
- Heavy sweating
- Muscle cramps
- Extreme tiredness and weakness
What to do:
If you or someone you know is experiencing heat exhaustion, stop all activity, get to a cool spot and rest. Drink cool water.
Signs of heatstroke
- Loss of consciousness
Nausea or vomiting
- Rapid pulse
- Hot and dry skin (no sweating)
- Elevated body temperature (above 103°F)
What to do:
If you think a person is experiencing heatstroke, seek immediate medical attention or call 911. While waiting for medical attention, move the victim to a shady spot and spray down with cool water.
Even when it’s not hot outside, staying hydrated is essential to your health. But, when it’s warm outside, your body needs even more water to function properly. These tips will ensure you’re hydrated this summer:
- Track your water intake by using an app or pre-measured water bottle.
- Add fresh fruit to enhance your water’s taste.
- Drink a cup of water after every bathroom break.
- Eat foods rich in water, like watermelon and grapefruit.
Even when you’re not doing an outdoor activity, it can be hard to keep cool during the summer months. Keep these tips handy all summer long to maintain a safe and comfortable body temperature:
Stay Cool this Summer
- Stay indoors with air conditioning as much as possible.
- Stay hydrated (even when not thirsty).
- Wear loose, lightweight, light-colored clothing and sunscreen when outdoors.
- Cool down with cool showers or baths.
- Tune in to your local news for health and safety updates.
Seniors, in particular, are especially vulnerable to heat and the harmful rays of the sun. If you’re over 60, follow these six summer safety tips for seniors to ensure an enjoyable, safe day outdoors spent solo or with loved ones.
6 Summer Safety Tips for Seniors
1. Wear sunglasses
2. Take breaks
3. Seek out shade or AC
4. Apply bug spray
5. Stay hydrated
6. Stay in communication
Exercising caution is important, but if you or someone you know suffers one of the most common summer injuries or another medical emergency, know our emergency room is open 24/7/365 and we’re here to help.
Most Common Summer Injuries
Drink at least 6-12 ounces of water every 10-15 minutes while you are outside. Symptoms of dehydration include fatigue, muscle cramping and dizziness.
· Insect bites
Use bug spray and cover up exposed skin as much as possible. Most insect repellents recommend reapplication every 6 hours.
· Food poisoning
Wash food thoroughly, cook it well and refrigerate right away if necessary. To cook meat thoroughly cook it at 145°F for beef, pork, fish; 160 °F for hamburgers and ground meat; 165°F for chicken or turkey. If you are storing meat, keep it cool in the fridge or an insulated cooler below 40°F until ready to grill.
Wear sunscreen during exposure to the outdoors. Sunscreen should be applied about 30 minutes before sun exposure, then reapplied every two hours. Avoid sun exposure at peak time during midday. Go to the doctor if your sunburn blisters.
Drowning is the second most common cause of death among children ages 1-4 years old. Be careful when jumping into a body of water and be sure to supervise children swimming. Children between the ages of 1-4 may be able to learn how to swim depending on development but this does not substitute for adult supervision.