Now that Spring has arrived and the warmer weather is on the horizon, most children and their families will take any opportunity they can to get outside and enjoy the weather and longer daylight hours. Though you don’t want to take away any of the fun of being outside, it’s important for families to still take the appropriate safety precautions that come with some of the activities children will participate in during the Spring months and as summer approaches as well.
- Brain injuries can be caused by everyday incidents such as trampoline accidents and sports injuries. Whenever there is a possibility that a child may land on his or her head or neck, there is a possibility that it may result in a brain injury, so it is important that families enforce safety measures as children participate in these types of activities. Whether your child is learning to ride a bike this year or racing around on their scooter or skateboard, be sure that your child is wearing a helmet. Though it may be difficult to get your children to wear a helmet, but will become second nature to your child as long as you make it clear they cannot participate in certain activities without wearing a helmet and following through consistently. Remember that you are also your child’s biggest role model, so be sure to wear a helmet when you participate in these activities as well.
- With warmer weather approaching, families are sure to host or go to a party where someone has fired up the BBQ. Though small children may be around, as long as families are following simple precautions, there’s no reason you can’t safely cook outdoors with children nearby. For example, when grilling with children around it’s important that you are not grilling near lawn games or areas children are playing. To ensure you keep a safe distance from any children playing, set a 3-foot “safety zone” using an expandable fence to keep children away. Families should also never leave matches, lighters or the grill unattended.
- Since children will be playing outside more, it’s crucial families reiterate the importance of staying in the yard or on the sidewalks and to be aware of oncoming traffic. Young children – particularly those between the ages of 5 and 9 – are at a higher risk of being hit by oncoming cars when crossing the street than children who are slightly older. Parents and caregivers should take the time to teach their children how to cross the street safely. Young children should be taught to never cross the street without a trusted adult, while older children should practice doing so with an adult before being allowed to cross unassisted.
- As children play outside more, they will begin to explore and learn about the world around them through their senses – specifically through touch and taste. Young children love to put toys and other objects in their mouths, and dirty hands are no exception. Handwashing is the best defense against many kinds of bacteria and viruses that cause infection. Families are encouraged to show their children how to wash their hands properly which will help children develop good personal hygiene habits.
What other Spring safety tips would you provide to families?