Memorial Day, the unofficial start of summer for most of the United States, is just around the corner. It’s time to start planning how to fill the longer days and warmer nights. No matter what you choose to do, here are some ideas for making sure your summer is as fun and safe as it can be.
1. Stay Hydrated
Dehydration can be fatal, but before that happens, it can make for a really unpleasant afternoon. As your body tries to cope, you may start to feel sluggish or tired, get a headache, or feel lightheaded to go along with feeling thirsty and getting dry mouth. Dehydration and sunburn go hand-in-hand, one making the other worse, which makes it all the more important to nip the problem in the bud.
Sports drinks and pediatric rehydration options are designed to rebalance a system when a large amount of fluid has been lost, not to prevent dehydration in the first place. These things are better than going thirsty, but if you’re serious about feeling your best, there is only one thing for it: Water!
2. Wear Sunscreen and Reapply It During the Day
Sunscreen marketing would have you believe that their products are so sweat-proof and waterproof that putting it on once in the morning is all you need for all-day protection. However, both the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the American Academy of Dermatology recommend reapplying sunscreen every two hours, or after swimming and toweling off, to maintain a sufficient level of coverage.
Aerosol sunscreens have gotten more popular in recent years, and they’re certainly convenient, but they can leave gaps in coverage while leaving a residue on surrounding surfaces with their excess spray. Traditional sunscreen works just as well, leaves fewer gaps when properly applied, and limits the amount of pollution in your surrounding spaces.
3. Never Lose Track of Your Family
If you’re bringing the whole family to a fair, water park, or amusement park, it’s often tricky to keep everyone together; add a friend or two and the difficulty can ramp up quickly, leaving you in the unenviable position of shepherd instead of having fun with the rest of your family. The good news is that there are an increasing number of monitoring devices available, which can help you keep track of everyone in your party even if you temporarily lose sight of them.
For kids, HereO looks like a normal watch, but connects to an app on iOS and Android phones to let you know where the wearers are. Tinitell even adds the option of calling your child to check up on them without the risk of them pulling out their phone on a roller coaster and losing it.
4. Be extra safe around the water
At Life Floor, we spend every day thinking about how to make people safer when they’re in wet areas; we’re deeply proud that our slip-resistant, impact-absorbing tiles have virtually eliminated slip-and-fall injuries at some water parks. But water safety begins long before kids are close enough to the water to slip in.
Organizations like the World’s Largest Swimming Lesson are great resources for finding out which facilities in your area are committed to water safety and giving kids a skill they’ll use for the rest of their lives.
5. Wear a Helmet
Long summer bike rides are a great way to get active and explore different parts of your area. Whether you’re mountain biking trails to get away from it all or just tooling around the neighborhood, there’s no age at which you should stop wearing a helmet.
According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, the time as the sun is going down (from 6-9pm) is the most dangerous time to be out on a bike. By observing traffic laws and having the proper safety gear, you can mitigate a lot of that risk and simply enjoy your time spent outside.