Over the past few weeks, we’ve covered pool and water safety and backyard barbecue safety. There are some other things to consider during the summer too.
Heat and Sun Exposure
Bugs and Other Itchy Items
First, this is Missouri. It will be hot! We might enjoy a mild winter or temperate spring, but August will be hot…and probably humid. Ward off heat exhaustion by getting a drink of water every 20 minutes. If you’re summer activities take you outside for over an hour, consider Pedialyte or some other drink that will replenish electrolytes as well as hydrate your body.
In addition to the heat, sunburns can be very painful. Wear a hat that protects your head, face, neck, and ears if possible. A long-sleeved cotton shirt helps too. Applying a broad-spectrum sunscreen (SPF of 15 or higher) will add another layer of protection. UV rays are most intense between 10 am and 4 pm, so avoid prolonged sun exposure during this time. Sunscreen is recommended during this time even when it isn’t sunny.
Ticks, chiggers, poison ivy, Oh My! Avoiding itchy items will help make your summer more enjoyable. Much like protecting from the sun, a long-sleeved cotton shirt will help you avoid the itch of poison ivy. Not sure what poison ivy looks like? The Missouri Department of Conservation can show you.
Clothing worn while walking through wooded or brushy areas can be shed when returning indoors to avoid prolonged exposure to ticks as well. Ticks can carry Lyme disease, so avoiding areas where they live is recommended whenever possible. The same is true for mosquitoes. Removing their breeding habitat by emptying containers of standing water and treating outdoor ponds can help decrease their population. The carriers of West Nile Virus also cause an incredibly itchy sensation that is particularly rough on little kids.
Traveling during the summer months can be a wonderful experience. Whether you’re taking a long weekend trip to Branson or doing a month-long trip to Brazil, there are some good things to remember. Make sure a trusted friend or family member knows where you’ll be and when you should return. Pack a first aid kit for small mishaps and assess your physical strength before and during your trip. Knowing your personal limits is important when traveling. Assess your surroundings as well. This can be as simple as checking the playground equipment when you take the kids to Walther Park, but also includes awareness on trips to watch the Cardinals play, airport safety when flying, and storing personal belongs out of sight while on roadtrips.
You can learn more about these items and other useful tips here that will help you have a good time while staying safe. Happy Trails!