From keeping your kids hydrated to teaching them not to play in cars, here are tips and tricks for avoiding the summer dangers your kids may find in outdoor play
Prevent Heat Exhaustion
Symptoms of heat exhaustion include nausea, vomiting, dizziness, and confusion. If you suspect your child may be suffering from it, the AAP recommends you have him stop all physical activity, lie down in a cool place, and drink fluids. Seek medical care if the symptoms don’t stop quickly or your child’s body temperature is 103°F or higher.
Prevent mosquito bites by keeping kids away from bodies of stagnant water, applying an insect repellent containing DEET (like OFF! Family Care Insect Repellent Smooth and Dry, available at Target stores; $6), and having children stay indoors in the early-morning and early-evening hours, when the pesky insects are most abundant. The AAP says bug sprays that contain 10 to 30 percent DEET are safe for use on children over 2 months old
Dehydration can occur in kids who are extremely active. During exercise, depending on their size and weigh, kids are encourages to drink between four and ten ounces of fluid (two guls=one ounce) every 15 to 20. For junior jocks exercising more than 45 minutes, a sports drink (not an energy drink) with 6 to 8 percent carbohydrates and electrolytes will help maintain balanced energy levels.
The Most Portable Water Bottle Ever
The flexible BPA-free Platypus SoftBottle is perfect for kids and moms on the go. When the bottle is empty, just roll it up and stash.
Ditch the Itch
If your kid’s been exposed to poison ivy, poison oak, or poison sumac, here’s how to make him more comfortable: Wash the area with soap and water for at least ten minutes; apply an over-the-counter 1% hydrocortisone cream; and keep scratching damage to a minimum by trimming his fingernails. For persistent itching, use calamine lotion three to four times a day. Call a doctor if the rash is on your child’s face or if these treatments don’t work.
Keep Ticks Off
To prevent tick bites when you and the kids are out in grassy or wooded areas, wear long-sleeved shirts, tuck the ends of pants into socks, and consider applying an insect repellent containing permethrin (like Repel Permanone, $6; amazon.com) to pant cuffs, socks, and shoes (but not to skin).