summer safety tips for babiesIllness and injury don’t take the summer off. Don’t let these risk factors ruin your summer. Here are a few tips for keeping your babies and toddlers safe this summer.

Water Don’t let their size fool you, inflatable pools are just as dangerous as larger in-ground pools. Taking your eyes off your baby can have serious consequences. Research indicates that in 20 percent of drownings, an adult was present, but distracted. When supervising your child in the water, leave all the distractions in your bag. Reading a book or texting may seem innocent enough, but taking your eyes off your child in the pool could be deadly. Always stay close enough to the pool that you can easily grab your child in the case of an emergency.

When you and your child are finished enjoying the water for the day, be sure to empty the water table or pool. This will prevent children from going back to play when your back is turned.

Car Seat Never leave a baby in the car, not even for a minute or two. Temperatures in the car can rise quickly, leaving your child at risk for heat related injury. Each year, babies are place in their car seats and busy parents who are not on their normal routine forget they are there. Try placing something of importance, like a wallet or phone, beside them to remind you.

Slides Taking a ride down the slide with your young child can actually be very dangerous. In many cases the toddler gets caught on the side of the slide and the additional force of the adult riding behind causes the limbs to break. Rather than riding along with your child, walk along with them as them slide down or suggested a smaller slide.

Sunshine Your baby should be protected from the sun every time they go outside. Dressing them in long sleeves and a hat and keeping them under the shade of a stroller or other protective sun coverings is key. Additionally, it is best to avoid the sun’s rays when they are at their strongest, between 10am and 2pm. Sunscreen creams with an SPF of 30 or higher that contain zinc oxide or titanium dioxide are generally safe for infants and provide a physical block against the sun.

Germs Many people associate germs and sickness with the cold months of winter, but enteroviruses thrive in warm weather. Do your best to prevent illness by washing your child’s hands frequently, especially after play dates, shopping cart rides, water activities and before meals.

Bug Bites Mild winters lead to an up rise in the deer tick population. Protect yourself from ticks by wearing long sleeves and pants when you are outside in a heavily wooded area. It is good measure to always check your child for ticks after enjoying the outdoors. Look for small brown or black spots that can either be flat or puffy. If you find any, using tweezers to remove the tick can limit your risk of infection.

Treat other itchy bug bites by washing the area with soap and water before applying calamine lotion. Use a credit card to scrape out the stinger. This will prevent against the spread of more venom into your child’s body.

Sturdy Shoes Trade the cute flip flops and sandals in for sturdy, easy to walk in shoes. The best toddler shoes have closed heels and toes with a bottom tread. These can protect against the hot pavement and other hidden dangers.

Don’t miss any fun this summer season. If accidents and illness do arise, NiteOwl Pediatrics, Chattanooga urgent care for kids is here to help!