Safety Tips to Keep Your Kids Safe this Summer
Parents love their kids and want to keep them safe. Summertime safety is an issue parents think about on a daily basis. They often wonder, “What else can I do to make sure my family is safe?” Teaching kids about safety measures in case of an emergency can go a long way in keeping a cool head when bad things happen. Check out these practical tips to keep families safe so everyone can enjoy summertime fun:
- Talk about strangers. Instead of saying “Don’t talk to strangers,” say, “Ask me or your Dad before you talk to another grown-up. Kids look innocently at other adults and may not be able to perceive when they are in danger. Along the same lines, instruct your kids not to accept candy or treats from people other than parents, babysitters or friend’s parents. If they are playing at the park instruct them to not wander where they cannot see you. Don’t monogram your kids clothing, if a stranger uses their name, your child may be confused and think they know the adult.
- Check out neighbors. Parents can take an extra step to insure their kids are safe to play outdoors in their neighborhood by using BeenVerified.com. If you’re new to the neighborhood or looking to move to a new neighborhood, parents can locate sex offenders. Being aware of potential dangers gives parents one leg up on keeping their kids safe from harm.
- Summer sports. Be sure to keep your child hydrated when playing sports in the heat of the day. To prevent injuries insist upon a warm up and cool down routine that includes proper stretching. It is crucial for kids to wear proper protective gear when participating in group sports. Consult the coach to make sure your child is in compliance.
- Bike safety. Bike riding can give kids a sense of freedom and mobility. To help keep them safe, be sure they always wear a helmet that fits properly. They also need to understand proper traffic signals. They should always travel in the same direction as traffic, avoid riding on the sidewalk and be alert for cars that are turning, exiting a driveway or opening a driver’s side door. Even if they only ride in daylight hours, it is wise to wear bright colored clothing and reflective markings on their bike.
- Hiking safety. If you’re going on a family hike, kids can get separated from parents by running ahead. It’s important to teach them the importance of staying on the trail and following trail signs. Be sure to instill the importance of not drinking untreated water. They should always assume the water is contaminated and only drink bottled water. Before hiking show kids photos of poisonous plants like poison ivy. Ticks lurk in tall grasses where kids like to play, check the kids for ticks before bedtime to insure they are tick free. Dress them in long sleeves and pants to reduce skin exposure. Have the kids carry a whistle in case they get lost so you can easily locate them.
- Water safety. Families spend a lot of time at the pool, lake or beach. Water safety will prevent kids from getting hurt around the water. Teach kids to swim at a young age so if they fall into the water they won’t panic. Teach kids to follow local water safety rules for when they are playing in or near the water. Cover the kids in waterproof sunscreen and apply often. Have the kids take a break every couple of hours to make sure they are property hydrated.
- Action Plan. If your kids are outside with friends playing by themselves, have an action plan in case something does happen and your child or one of their friends need help (playground or bike accident, stranger danger, etc.). Make sure your child knows your cell phone number and home address and has clear instructions as to the steps he or she should take if there’s a problem. Connect with a group of neighborhood parents you know and trust that will help keep an eye on the kids and educate your child as to which neighbors/homes they can go to in case of emergency if they cannot reach you or your home is too far away.
Don’t be afraid of going too far when it comes to keeping kids safe this summer. Having a cautious attitude and following your intuition can be the difference between harm coming your way and your family averting a potentially dangerous situation. It is always better to err on the side of safety when it comes to protecting your family and knowing your surroundings should be at the top of the list.