Summer is a wonderful time to be outside playing in the sunshine, going swimming, having fun and making memories. Although we seem to have had more rain than sun so far this summer, hopefully more sunshine is on the way. To help keep you and your family safe while enjoying the great outdoors this month, below are some helpful tips and resources around sun safety, heat exhaustion, and water safety.
Did you know that the skin is the largest organ in the body?
And, that ultraviolet (UV) exposure has both benefits and risks associated with it?
What’s important is the amount and type of UV exposure one gets. In order to protect your skin from UV, Health Canada recommends limiting your time in the sun during the hours of 11 am to 4 pm. When in the sun you can use ‘Sun Protection Factor’, known as , which is found in most sunscreens (and some cosmetics). There are many different kinds of sunscreen available to choose from. Sometimes it can be overwhelming with all the various options of sticks, lotions, or sprays and how to choose what is the best protection for your children. In addition to the standard sunscreens, there are many natural and homemade sunscreen recipes as well. Inform yourself and choose what you feel is right for you and your family.
And, despite our best efforts to protect our skin, we can sometimes still end up with a sunburn. If that happens, here are ten natural sunburn remedies that may help provide relief.
Heat Exhaustion & Hydration
Skin protection isn’t the only thing we need to be concerned about in the hot, sunny weather. Heat can also be a real concern especially in young children and the elderly. There is the risk of heat exhaustion which occurs when the body’s core temperature overheats, fails to self-regulate and can produce some dangerous symptoms, including dizziness or fainting. Learn how to manage symptoms of heat exhaustion should they occur.
So how do you cope in the sun and the heat of long summer days? Make sure you and your loved ones are well hydrated. Although it may be difficult to track how much fluids your children are taking in during their activities, here are some easy and helpful tips to stay hydrated, whether with water, fruit or popsicles.
Keeping kids cool (literally and figuratively) helps to decrease the risk of overheating. Tips for dressing your children appropriately for fun in the sun include choosing light weight, cotton, loose fitting clothing, a hat and sunglasses; there is even clothing and bathing suit gear available, labelled with SPF.
And what would be a Canadian summer be without water, whether you’re at a pool, beach or cottage. In order for you to get the most enjoyment out of your water activities, make sure you and your family feel comfortable around water. The Red Cross summer water safety guide provides many tips for swimming and boating water safety. And Kate Jones, from Bonbon Break, has a great checklist for empowering kids through water safety.
However you choose to spend the rest of your summer, have fun and stay safe!
The content in this blog is meant for information only and is not intended to be used as medical advice. For medical advice, please consult your health care provider.