Here are some tips to keep you and your family safe in the summer.
So although we are in lockdown and the world is a very strange place to be at present; summer is well and truly upon us. This is great fun normally but can come with increased risks as we are all spending lots more time outside. I just wanted to share a few things with you to help keep you and your family safe. Most of them are common sense but are things that we all often forget.
The most common and obvious risk to us all is sunburn. It is super important that we protect our skin from the sun. The easiest way to do this is to minimise time spent not in the shade and to use sunscreen.
Here are the essentials that you need to know:
When buying a sunscreen you want to ensure it has the following:
- Sun protection factor (SPF) of at least 30 to protect against UVB
- At least 4 star UVA protection. Sometimes you will see UVA written in a circle on a bottle and this means it meets European standards.
- You should ensure that the sunscreen is still within date; most creams last 12-24 months.
Key safety facts about sunscreen
The NHS Livewell guide talks about how you should choose your factor of sunscreen and the correct way to apply it.
- Even with sunscreen on you still shouldn’t go out for excessive periods of time.
- Don’t rely solely on sunscreen to protect you from the sun, you still need to wear sensible loose clothing to cover up and spend time in the shade. Also don’t go out between 11am -3pm when the sun is at its hottest.
- Children’s skin is a lot more sensitive than ours so it is so important that they always have sun cream on that is a high factor – preferably factor 50. Their skin is much more sensitive than adult skin and damage caused by repeated exposure to sunlight could lead to skin cancer developing in later life.
- Children under the age of 6 months should be kept out of the direct sunlight and be in the shade.
- It is also very important to cover and protect our eyes from the sun rays by wearing suitable sunglasses and avoid looking directly at the sun as this can cause permanent damage.
Who doesn’t love a bbq safety tip?
In my house I have to be honest and say we bbq loads in the summer. Just remember if you have kids outside not to leave the bbq unattended when it is on or is cooling down. Little hands love to touch things like hot coals or grills and can get some nasty burns.
Bites and Stings
Being outdoors in the lovely hot weather you will notice the ever increasing number of insects like mosquitoes, bees and wasps. When you get bitten or stung this is often very annoying. It can be itchy and sore but does not normally cause any other big problems.
Some people can have anaphylactic reactions to bites or stings and go into shock. If they are known to have this reaction and have an Epipen with them please administer it or give it to them to administer ASAP and call 999 for an ambulance. The use of Epipens is something that is covered in all our training courses. If this is the first time this reaction has occurred make sure you stay with the person and focus on keeping them calm. Loosen any tight clothing and call 999 IMMEDIATELY!!
If you get stung or bitten by an insect and have no signs of anaphylaxis, the NHS guidance has excellent tips on how to treat.
Paddling pools are lots of fun and the kids love to play in them when its super hot. In fact the other day I got in ours with my kids and it was wonderful.
Here is the checklist on how to keep safe:
- Never leave any children unattended by the pools, even older children. Without being too gloomy it only needs a couple of centimeters of water for a child to drown in.
- Never over fill your paddling pool.
- If you need to step away from the paddling pool to get a drink or even go to the loo then make sure that the children are out of the water.
- Always check the temperature of the water as it can often be too chilly.
- If you have added boiling water into the cold please test it prior to kids going in as there could be “hotspots” which can burn a child.
- Once kids have been splashing around for awhile just be aware that the floor around the pool can be slippery and so kids can fall and hurt themselves.
Finally remember to stay hydrated. Dehydration can make you feel lousy and actually cause you to be quite unwell. For more information, we have an article on dehydration which goes into more details.
We hope everyone stays safe during these unknowing Covid-19 times and has a lovely safe and enjoyable summer.
Expert First Aid provides this information for guidance only and it does not in any way substitute for medical advice. Expert First Aid is not responsible or liable for any diagnosis made or actions taken based on this information.