Summer’s finally here, and that means the kids are going to be spending more time out of school and having fun. Summer isn’t always just fun and games though – certain types of illness and injury are more common for kids during the warmer months of the year when they’re out playing more frequently. Be on the lookout for these health risks this summer so you can help keep your kids safe and healthy.
Asthma And Allergies
With the warm weather of summer comes an increase in pollen levels and other allergens. While it might not necessarily be a problem for you, it’s possible that your kids might suffer from seasonal allergies of some kind. Allergies are the 6th leading cause of chronic illness in the U.S., so it’s best to be careful if you know your child has an allergy. In addition to pollen, the most common allergens are milk, eggs, peanuts, soy, wheat, tree nuts, fish, and shellfish; however, many children are allergic to bees as well. Talk to your doctor about asthma and allergy prevention strategies for the summer.
Accidents And Injuries
The American Heart Association recommends that children over the age of two participate in at least one hour of moderate physical activity each day. However, kids aren’t always the most careful when they’re playing, and that means they are more likely to get hurt during the summer due to rough play. Falls can be a common source, often when kids fail to catch themselves before hitting the ground. The AAPD notes that 10 to 39% of dental injuries in children are caused by sports, particularly chipped and broken teeth. Sports can also be a common cause of foot and ankle injuries, particularly if your child is prone to tripping or losing their footing. 75% of Americans will experience foot health problems of varying degrees of severity at one time or another in their lives. To keep your kids safe, make sure they’ve got the right protective gear for all their favorite sports, and have an adult nearby to supervise and prevent injury.
Screen Time Struggles
Even if your kids aren’t spending quite as much time outdoors this summer, they could still potentially have some health issues from too much screen time. Frequent screen use can cause tired and dry eyes, even in children. To prevent eye strain and protect your child’s vision, limit how much time they’re spending on screens, or at least make sure they’re taking frequent breaks.
When kids are more involved in sports in the summer, they run the risk of becoming dehydrated. Kids might not always remember to take breaks for water on their own, and won’t always recognize dehydration symptoms right away. Try to keep a water bottle with you when you go out in the summer so they’re able to drink and hydrate as needed.
Sun Exposure Extremes
Kids tend to be especially sensitive to sun and heat exposure, but don’t always recognize the signs that maybe it’s time to head back inside. Children can end up with serious burns from the sun, heat exhaustion, or a variety of other health issues relating to heat and sun exposure. Make sure you keep track of how long your kids have been outside and if they’ve applied sunscreen.
Summer is a great time for kids to get outside and play, but there are some potential health risks associated with the season. Keep your kids healthy and safe this summer by recognizing some of the most common health issues.