Summer means swimming, boating, and fishing for many families. But before you can enjoy the water, you must ensure everyone is safe. Here are some tips on preparing yourself and your kids for a fun and safe summer in the water.
Everyone Must Use Sunscreen
When you and your children go outside without sunscreen, the sun’s UVA and UVB rays can hurt your skin. Getting sunburned can be painful. More than that, UV rays can cause cancer. Sunscreen helps protect your skin from the sun and keeps you safe.
Choose a broad-spectrum sunscreen that has SPF 30 or higher. This will protect you from UVA and UVB rays. SPF stands for sun protection factor. The higher the SPF, the better the sunscreen will protect your skin from the sun’s harmful UV rays. Adults and children must put on sunscreen 30 minutes before they go outside. This will give the sunscreen time to work on your skin.
Make sure to put sunscreen on all of your skin that will be in the sun. That includes your face, neck, back, arms, and legs. Include even the areas covered by swimwear unless you wear specially treated suits that protect against UV rays. Don’t forget to use lip balm with sunscreen as well. Reapply sunscreen every two hours or more if you are sweating or swimming.
When you are out of the water, stay in the shade to minimize the UV rays you are exposed to. If there is no shade, wear a hat. A wide-brimmed hat gives more protection. Children have more sensitive skin, so do not let them stay in the sun for too long. They may not realize the intensity of the heat because of the water.
Protect the Eyes with Sunglasses
UV rays are also dangerous for the eyes of children and adults alike. Wearing sunglasses helps protect your eyes from UV rays. Look for sunglasses that say they offer 100% UV protection. This means the glasses will filter out all the harmful UV rays.
Sunglasses are not just for sunny days, either. The sun reflects off of water, sand, and snow. That can be harmful to your eyes as well. So put on those sunglasses near water, even if it’s cloudy. Get fun sunglasses with 100% UV protection for your children. That will get them into the habit of wearing sunglasses.
Choose Safe Floaters
Some water floaters can be dangerous for kids. Arm floaters that are inflated can get deflated. Arm floaters can also slip off. When this happens in the water, children can drown, especially if parents are not looking.
It is crucial to ensure that your kids’ floaties are not deflatable and are fully secure. Choose those designed in one piece where the chest floater and arm floats are connected to shoulder straps and held in place by adjustable chest buckles. Check that it cannot slip off your child. And even when your child is wearing it, do not take your eyes off your child in the water. Also, be close enough to your child always to immediately assist them as needed.
Teach Your Kids to Swim
One of the best ways to prepare your kids for water adventures is to teach them how to swim. It is a skill that they will have for their entire lives. It’s also a great way to bond with your children. Swimming together is an excellent way to exercise and have fun at the same time.
If you do not know how to swim, there are classes you can take together. You can also look online for instructional videos or hire a swimming instructor. Start in shallow water and work up to deeper water as your child becomes more confident in their swimming skills.
If you start getting swimming lessons for your children while they are still babies, it will be easier for them to learn. That’s because babies have a natural affinity for water. They are more comfortable in the water than adults and older children. If you wait until your child is older to start swimming lessons, do not worry. It is never too late to learn how to swim.
Enjoy the Water Anywhere with Your Children
Water adventures can be a lot of fun for the whole family. By preparing yourself and your children with the proper sunscreen, sunglasses, and floaties, you can rest assured that everyone will have a safe and enjoyable time. Teach your children how to swim, so they can enjoy swimming in any body of water. And lastly, make sure to have plenty of sunscreen on hand to reapply often!