Make This Summer a Safe Season

Sharanya Pillai, IIK Young Contributor
Tuesday, April 10, 2018
Sharanya Pillai
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Summer is finally here!! School’s closed and it’s the time when we children want to head outdoors: the beach, pool, park, backyard are all our favourite destinations. Our parents have to be exceptionally careful when it comes to monitoring the children’s health and well – being during the season. The harsh summers can cause problems ranging from dehydration and sunburn to food poisoning- on account of spoilage and insect bites. Let’s see how we can make this summer a safe season.

Sun protection
As kids have sensitive skin, too much exposure to sun can cause sunburns. So use a sunscreen with a sun protection factor specially formulated for children. Apply it generously twenty minutes before sun exposure too all the exposed parts of the body, including the face. Also make children wear a white brimmed hat, long sleeved t-shirt, cotton clothing and sunglasses. Keep children indoors at times of high sun exposure, between 10 AM and 4 PM.
While swimming in public pools ensure that you reapply sunscreen regularly and keep eyes and scalp protected with well fitting goggles and swimming cap. This is to protect the child’s sensitive skin which gets damaged due to chlorine in public pools. Cool baths and showers are very effective in reducing body heat

Good hydration
Children and seniors need more protection from sun as their bodies cannot manage temperature variations effectively. Ensure that they stay well hydrated during summers. Hydrate your body every hour by drinking a glass of lemonade, coconut water, Aam panna , chaas, or lassi. Adding mint , onion , raw mango, cucumber, watermelon with meals help as a heat pacifier. Kids are at a risk of dehydration if left in a closed vehicle even if it is only for few minutes. So never leave a child unattended in a car.

Food protection
Bacteria in food multiply faster in hot, humid weather preparing and eating food outdoors – in the garden, at picnics and barbecues can also be a problem, where refridgeration and places to wash hands are not easily available. Prevent food poisoning by eating fresh food that’s been stored and cooked correctly. Food that has been left out of the fridge for more than four hours especially cooked rice, cooked pasta, poultry, meat and seafood can cause serious vomiting and diarrhoea in children. If outdoors, hand sanitizers and tissue to clean our hands before we handle food especially if we are playing in the park or the sand

Safety first
Bees, ants, flies and other insects are commonly found in the park or outdoors. Parents must ensure that children wear comfortable cotton clothing that covers their arms and legs to protect them if they are playing outdoors. Keep a first aid kit and anti-histamines handy especially if children are allergic to bee stings or insect bites. These are some of the ways in which we can keep ourselves safe during summer season.


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