Summer has arrived and it is time to enjoy some sun and fun with your family and friends. Here are a few tips to keep you and your family safe this summer.
Drinking adequate amounts of water and staying hydrated is one of the most important things we can do for our overall health. Water makes up more than 70% of our body’s tissues and plays a role in nearly every bodily function, from regulating our temperature, and cushioning our organs and joints, to transporting food and oxygen to our cells and carrying away waste. Not drinking enough water places you at risk for dehydration. Summer dehydration occurs when you are losing more fluids through sweating than replacing through drinking and can cause fatigue, headaches, and constipation. To stay hydrated:
Drink plenty of fluids; 6-8 glasses of water a day is a good starting place. Try adding a few fresh fruit slices to your water for some natural flavoring.
Be mindful when drinking caffeinated drinks, like coffee, tea, and colas. These beverages tend to draw more fluids from your body than they replenish.
Check your urine; if it is darker than pale yellow, you are dehydrated.
PROTECT YOUR SKIN
Skin cancer is the most common type of cancer in the U.S. Most cases are caused by overexposure to ultraviolet light. Incorporate these skin protective habits as part of your daily routine to help keep you and your family safe this summer:
Apply sunscreen with at least 30 SPF, 30 minutes before going out and every 2 hours while outside. Read the label on your sunscreen and choose a sunscreen with zinc oxide or titanium dioxide.
The best sun protection is wearing long sleeves, a wide-brimmed hat, and sunglasses with 100% UVA and UVB protection.
Seek shade when the sun’s rays are strongest, 10 am- 4 pm.
Check your skin regularly so that you know what is normal and what may have changed. Stay on track with your regular preventive screening exams and discuss any skin changes with your PCP (primary care physician).
PRACTICE WATER SAFETY
On hot, sunny days, nothing is more refreshing than a dip in the pool or a trip to the lake. Unfortunately, drowning is the leading cause of death for children. Understanding the importance of water safety will help keep everyone safe.
Teach your children how to swim and never let them swim alone or leave children unattended in or near water.
Always wear a properly fitting life jacket when boating and playing on the water.
When possible, swim and play in places with a lifeguard, and always check for posted warnings at waterfronts.
MORE SUNNY DAY REMINDERS
Never leave children or pets in a parked car, even with the windows down.
Make sure children’s playground equipment is cool enough to touch.
Check yourself and your children for ticks after outdoor activities.
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