Ask the Pediatrician

How can I keep my family safe this summer?

School is out and summer is in! Here are a few important summer-safety “S” rules and tips to ensure your family enjoys a safe summer.

Unfortunately, drowning is still a leading cause of death for kids in California. To keep safe around water, follow these three rules:

Swim lessons. Everyone should learn how to swim. Not only is it good exercise and fun, but it’s a lifesaving skill.

Supervision. Watch kids in and around the water. With young kids, you must be an arm’s reach away—no relaxing or chatting. For older children, adults can take turns watching the water. No looking at cell phones.

Safety measures. Pools should be completely surrounded by a fence. Don’t take a pool fence down just because your kids are older since a younger child may visit or a neighbor may wander in.

In Southern California, skin safety is important all year, but especially during the summer. Here are three tips to protect skin from the sun’s harmful rays:

Shield skin by seeking shade when possible, wearing wide-brim hats and UPF clothing (available at a variety of price points). Also, make sure strollers and baby carriers have large sunshades.

Stock up on sunscreen that is chemical free, broad spectrum, and at least SPF 30. It’s okay to use on babies too if needed.

Safely and frequently apply sunscreen as part of your morning routine, after swimming, and every two hours in the sun. Wash it off at night. Teach kids to apply sunscreen properly for when they are away from you.

With a little preparation, you can enjoy a fun-filled and safe summer.