Celebrating Safely this 4th of July!
The 4th of July means parades, fireworks, BBQs, pool parties, and great family time! It also brings some safety hazards for babies, toddlers, and preschoolers. Here are some tips to keep your family safe this summer.
- Liberally apply SPF 30+ sunscreen early on children and babies over 6 months. Reapply every few hours and after swimming, running through the sprinklers, or any other water activity. For babies under 6 months, check with your pediatrician about their sunscreen recommendations and keep them out of the sun with a loose cover and a hat.
- Apply bug spray if you’ll be anywhere with mosquitos. Check with your pediatrician about their DEET guidelines.
- If you are going to a party, parade or a crowded place, decide up front who will be responsible for watching each child. Consider dividing and conquering. Never assume family or friends are watching your children and be clear when passing on the responsibility to another person.
- With children over 2, talk about expectations, rules and clear consequences including staying in a designated area, asking before eating and drinking anything, and playing safe. Have them repeat the rules back to you.
- Be extra mindful of open cups, grills, fire pits, pools, ponds, and other safety hazards. If you are hosting a BBQ, consider putting a play yard around danger zones.
- If you are celebrating near water, put life vests on all your little ones, even if they aren’t swimming.
- Make sure your family is staying hydrated, and pack a few extra snacks, too. No one is happy when they are hungry.
- Try to stick with nap routines to avoid tired meltdowns and to make it to the late firework shows.
- If your family is celebrating near loud music or noise, use noise-canceling headphones for little ears. Don’t use earplugs – they can be a choking hazard.
- Consider dressing your family in bright or matching colors so you can find them in a crowd easily.
- If you’ll be celebrating at a crowded event where toddlers or preschoolers could get lost, designate a meeting place.
- Frequently check your children for ticks and tick bites, and consider a quick shower before bed to wash any critters away.
- Flashlights are handy if your family’s festivities go on into the night.
- For extra safety, consider taking an infant and child CPR and Safety class ahead of the holiday. That will arm you with the necessary skills to care for anyone in an emergency, no matter the date.