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Summer is one of the best seasons for kids. Nothing’s better than long sunny days filled with outdoor fun like swimming, camping, and cookouts. But summer has its own fair share of dangers for kids. From sunburn to dehydration to drowning, it’s crucial for parents to know the dangers that come along with summer fun.

To help keep your kids safe this summer, here are five essential safety tips to keep in mind.

Keep an eye on your kids when they’re in the water

Water-related activities are a summer favorite for families. In fact, up to 87 million people in the U.S. participate in recreational boating. But whether you’re at the lake or in your own backyard, it’s essential to keep an eye on your kids at all times. 

Many parents often are unaware when their kids are struggling in the water because drowning looks very different in real life than it does in movies. Understand the real signs of drowning, and make sure your kids never swim unsupervised.

Use earplugs when swimming

Kids are more susceptible to bacterial and fungal ear infections during the summer months. This is because, when your kids go swimming or play in water, water can create  excess moisture in the ear canal. Excess moisture creates a breeding ground for bacteria. 

You can help to prevent ear infections by having your kids use earplugs when swimming. It’s also recommended to have your child tilt their head and thoroughly dry their ears with a towel after getting out of the water. If your child gets multiple ear infections over the course of three to 12 months, your pediatrician may recommend placing a special myringotomy tube in your child’s ear to help drain the excess fluid away.

Watch out for heat exhaustion

Cases of heat stroke spike during the summer months, and summer 2020 is expected to be hotter than average. Kids typically show mild symptoms of heat exhaustion prior to suffering from heat stroke such as dizziness, nausea, and cramping. Make sure your kids are drinking water regularly even if they’re not thirsty. Lightweight, breathable clothing is also recommended when playing outside.

Apply sunscreen every three hours

Whenever your kids are going, outside make sure to apply sunscreen with SPF 30 or higher. Reapply sunscreen every three hours, or immediately after your child gets out of the water. Avoid outdoor activities during peak sunshine hours, and keep your kids’ skin covered in lightweight clothing as much as possible. 

Double check your car

Before you hit the road for a camping trip or family vacation, make sure that your child’s car seat is properly fitted. Accidents involving cars, motorcycles, and trucks are the number one type of personal injury case in the country, and summer is considered to be the most dangerous time of the year for drivers. When almost 6 million car accidents happen in the U.S. annually, safety is key.

Be sure that you never leave your child unattended in the car, either. It doesn’t take long for the temperature inside the car to rise, and your kids can be in danger in just a few minutes. To prevent scary scenarios like locking your kids in the car with your child inside, establish a routine to check your vehicle before you get out and before you lock your car.

Summertime is filled with family fun, but it’s important to be vigilant about potential hazards that could be life-threatening for your kids. By following the tips above, you can feel confident knowing your family is safe and secure this summer.