Summer has arrived! That means flip flops, beaches, and barbecues are just around the corner. But longer days and outdoor adventures also means accidents are more likely to happen. Get your family summer-ready with a few of these tips:
1. Put together your own first aid kit or buy one
We recommend carrying a small family first aid kit with you while you’re outdoors this summer. Keep the kit in your car, cottage or backpack -wherever it will be handy and easily available. You can put together your own First Aid kit or purchase one from the American Red Cross. If making your own be sure to include the following items:
- Sterile gauze
- Antiseptic cleansing wipes
- Triangle bandage
- Elbow and knee plastic bandages
- Emergency blanket
- 2 Chewable aspirin tablets, (81 mg each), paracetamol or ibuprofen
- Antibiotic ointment packs
- Scissors, insect repellant, aloe vera
This is not an exhaustive list. Good first aid kits contain many more of the accessories you might need help patch up a bruise, a bug bite or simple injury.
2. Sun protection
This is a must. The American Academy of Dermatology recommends everyone use sunscreen that offers the following:
- Broad-spectrum protection (this protects against UVA and UVB rays)
- An SPF 30 or higher
- Water resistant
A sunscreen that offers the above helps to protect your skin from sunburn. In addition to using sunscreen, be sure to wear protective clothing and carrying out your outdoor activities under the shade, where possible.
3. Remember where to get help when you need it
Minor injuries (which happen a lot over the summer holidays), lend themselves to treatment at an urgent care center. Urgent Care centers are the happy medium between a trip to your family doctor or one to the Hospital Emergency Room. Urgent care centers deal with minor non-life-threatening injuries. This includes:
- Minor allergic reactions (mosquito bites, bee stings, poison ivy)
- Cuts, scrapes, bumps and bruises
- Broken bones
- Sun burns
Additionally, the average wait time to see a provider at an urgent care clinic is just 45 minutes.
4. Staying hydrated
Dehydration can hit you much faster than you think and younger children and toddlers are even more susceptible to it. So if you’re out in the sun for long periods of time, be sure to carry large quantities of water with you -in the car, on your person or anywhere you’ll be spending more than a few hours.
- Don’t wait until you’re thirsty to drink water. It’s best to drink water periodically throughout the day
- Drink water instead of a sports drinks. Sport drinks are okay but contain high levels of sugar
- Pay attention to signs of dehydration such as dry cracked lips, headaches or muscle cramps. For dehydration that isn’t relieved with water or that worsens over time, visit your urgent care center right away
5. Water Woes
Never leave kids unattended around any water. This includes lakes, swimming pools or even kiddie pools. Make sure there’s strict adult supervision from an adult who knows how to swim. Florida leads the nation as the state with the most child drownings and nationwide drowning is the leading cause of unintentional death in children ages 1-4.1 Drowning can happen to kids and adults of all ages so be extra vigilant when around the water this summer!
To be extra safe this summer, think about attending a certified CPR course near you. These are short one-day courses that go over basic life-saving skills.
Despite your best efforts to stay safe and healthy, accidents may still happen. So remember your local urgent care center for those times when you need medical care (for non-life-threatening injuries) but don’t want to wait in a busy hospital emergency room.
- Florida lost more children to drowning than any state — Here’s how to change that.