Guide to Summer Safety

I don't know about ya'll, but it is already in the high nineties around here! Those hot summer days are tempting to just go jump out in a pool, roll the top down on your road trip, or just relax with a sunbath while the kids go "camping" in the yard. All this is great and fun, and can last all summer without incident with just a few precautions!

Rule number one: Respect the sun. I'm the sunshine girl, I love it, but I know to be careful with it too. I just think of sunshine and turn red-- but even those who turn a nice golden brown risk skin cancer. Gloop on that sunscreen! It comes in lotions, sprays, and even wipes now that are wonderful if your going on a plane and can't bring liquids. Some sun sprays include bug spray-also important.

Rule number two: The sun plays hide seek. Hint: she always wins. Even under water or on cloudy days when you think you are safe, you can still get massively severe sunburn. It actually reflects... go figure, sunburn is worst on a cloudy day. Unless you are inside or in solid structure produced shade -always- remember sun screen!

Rule number three: Its not the heat its the-- wait, no, it is the heat. Dehydration and heat stroke can happen anywhere you get too hot, even if you are inside. Both are of course more likely if you are being active, but don't think your excused just because you are nothing but a lazy beach bum! Drink plenty, and not just water, you need to replace electrolytes or it just wont cut it. Juice and sports drinks are good (real juice, not that sugar water crap). Personal experience: don't go straight from running in the heat to guzzling ice cold water. Mondo sick tummy! Staying hydrated goes a far way for not overheating, but still pay attention. Anything feeling numb and tingly, short of breath, dizzy etc is a sure sign you need to stop what you are doing and cool down!

Rule number four: Water, water, everywhere... The best part of summer has to be swimming, easy. Unless of course you are us ten+ years ago, then the best part is moving. And swimming in the hotels when traveling to our new house. But closely followed by swimming. I'm a duck-- I love swimming-- but no one will tell you faster how dangerous the water can be.

Everyone knows to watch your kids, never let them near a pool without you etc but not everyone know how dangerous water can be even for an adult. I am not just talking about rip tide at the beach, but watch for that too of course! But just regular swimming.

There was a kid in my high school, a bit before my time, who was soon headed to the Olympics for diving. He had been swimming without a problem his whole life, had lifeguard training, and no one thought twice of him staying underwater longer then most. Turns out he landed just a little teensy tiny bit wrong and it knocked the wind out of him... he drowned.

I know a lot of people with their own pool like to swim by themselves, but you really shouldn't swim without a partner. Even if you think "I'm not diving, I'm just swimming laps. I'm healthy, I'm safe". Perhaps, perhaps not... If I had been in a pool the first time I passed out because of my heart deciding it hates me, I would still be blowing bubbles instead of writing a blog post. For those of you who missed it: I'm a healthy, active 23 year old with no previous history of medical problems. Water is wonderful, but respect her like the sun okay? Don't want to lose any readers!

One last note, especially for all our southern friends, watch out for whatever natural gross icky boy thingies might be in your area. Be it sharks or snakes (especially in the lakes and rivers around here! Water moccasins are a big problem!) and just plain poison ivy, make sure you know where its around, and how to recognize, treat and avoid it!  Also, make sure you are prepared for natural disasters-  we'll be doing a post shortly as part of our Summer Bash on putting together an emergency preparedness kit, so stay tuned.

Most importantly have a wonderfully fun and memorable summer! Lets make this one count!
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