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Safe Summer: 3 Ways to Protect Your Kids from Recreational Injuries

Children are out of school and are looking forward to a fun-filled summer both at home and while on vacation. Unfortunately, summertime adventures are more likely to result in injuries than sitting inside playing video games.

According to Medscape the most common summertime injuries are:

  • Drowning- For children under 5, drowning is the second leading cause of death.
  • Diving Injuries- Causing Spinal injuries, lacerations and concussion.
  • Heatstroke and Dehydration- Characterized by a change in mental status, confusion, and lack of sweating.
  • Sunburn- Can even result in 3rd degree burns!
  • Exercise-Associated Hyponatremia- Drinking too much water (not enough salt).
  • Poison Ivy, Oak and Sumac- Can be mild or serious depending on the patient’s reaction.
  • Insect Stings and Bites- Once again… can be mild or serious.
  • Tick Bites- Can be serious if the Tick is carrying Lyme Disease but not a problem if the tick is removed promptly.
  • Food Poisoning- Heat can result in food spoilage.
  • Allergy / Asthma- More prevalent when people are outside more.

But children are out of school and are looking forward to a fun-filled summer both at home and while on vacation. Here are some ways to ensure your family has a safe and happy vacation:

Supervision

One of the best deterrents to accidents and mishaps is close supervision. Young children should always have a parent or sitter monitoring them especially when they are in or around water. Older children should have limits as to where they can go and how far from the home they can travel on their own. Even teenagers should always keep parents in the know as to where they are and what activities they are engaging in. Curfews should be in place for all ages, even during these long summer months.

Training

Parents should always take the time to show their children how to observe safety rules while riding a bike or scooter. Enroll them in a bicycle safety class and restrict them to specific areas of the neighborhood until they are old enough to extend their boundaries. Parents can also teach them to be alert to safety hazards and train them on how to avoid interactions with strangers. Older children can take classes in babysitting, first aid, and CPR. Constant reminders of rules may be necessary to keep youngsters on the right track.

Safety Equipment

If your child is into bicycles, skateboards, and scooters, it is prudent to purchase safety equipment immediately. They may be pricey, but they are well worth the investment.

Helmets, knee pads, light reflectors, proper footwear, and other protective gear will keep family members away from the emergency room all summer long. Be aware of how to handle situations where parents have children in protective equipment but they are still injured by an outside force. If they are in an accident, a parent will be able to show that the necessary items to ensure safety were prudently provided.

Beware of Legal Liability

Unfortunately, we live in a lawsuit happy society and some people see an accident as an opportunity for windfall profit. On the other hand, people are expected to show reasonable care and responsibility. So you need to show reasonable care not only for your own children but also any children in your care. If you don’t you can be held legally liable for damages. Personal injury lawyers Bennett & Sharp PLLC put it this way:

“Slip and fall accidents can happen for many reasons. Some are not preventable, since sometimes people just trip randomly. However, others are caused by problems like poor parking lot maintenance, wet floors, and torn carpeting. When determining liability and compensation in slip and fall cases, the courts have to consider the actions of both the property owner and the person who was injured. Generally, the property owner of the place that you fell is only responsible if he or she failed to provide a reasonably safe environment.

For example, if the manager of a store knew that someone had spilled milk but didn’t bother to send someone to clean it up, he or she could be liable if a customer slipped and got hurt. However, if the manager tried to get it cleaned up as quickly as possible, he or she may not be liable.”

Yes, summer is finally here, and many families are so looking forward to a stress-free and busy season. Exercising a bit of extra caution will help in making this an active, exciting, and safe break from school-year routines.

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About Tim McMahon

Work by editor and author, Tim McMahon, has been featured in Bloomberg, CBS News, Wall Street Journal, Christian Science Monitor, Forbes, Washington Post, Drudge Report, The Atlantic, Business Insider, American Thinker, Lew Rockwell, Huffington Post, Rolling Stone, Oakland Press, Free Republic, Education World, Realty Trac, Reason, Coin News, and Council for Economic Education. Connect with Tim on Google+