Tips for Safe and Healthy Summer
Summer is the best time to go to the beach, take a vacation, enjoy fresh produce and have some fun outdoor. However, incidences of sunburn, heat stress, dehydration, and water related injuries are the highest during summertime. Keep these useful tips in mind to ensure a safe and healthy summer for you and your family.
Keep Cool in the Sun
According to American Cancer Society and the Skin Cancer Foundation, skin cancer is the most prevalent cancer in America. One in five Americans will be diagnosed with skin cancer in their lifetime. Sun exposure is the leading cause of skin cancer. There a few tips to help you to stay cool and safe in the sun.
- Stay out of the direct sun – seek shaded areas or stay inside, especially during 10 am to 4 pm when the sun is the strongest.
- Put on sunscreen – always use sunscreens that protect you from UVA and UVB. Use a sunscreen with a SPF of at least 15. If you have very fair skin, use a sunscreen with a SPF of 30 or higher. Sunscreens do wear off - you need to reapply every 2 to 3 hours.
- Dress for summer - wear light-colored and lightweight clothing, wear wide brim hat to protect your skin from the sun and wear sunglasses to protect eyes from the sun
- Drink plenty of cool water – dehydration combined with heat could cause nausea, headache and heat stroke. It's important to drink water to carry out your body's normal function on a hot summer day.
According to CDC, 10 people die from unintentional drowning everyday. The ability to swim is one of the most important skills everyone should have. Be water-savvy and make the most of your summer vacation at the beach.
- Learn to swim – Lack of swimming ability is the main factor that affects drowning risk. Learn and practice swimming in a pool before you head to the beach and swim in the open water.
- Wear a life jacket – almost 50% of all water-related deaths could be prevented with the use of life jackets. Wear a life jackets when you go near or in the open water at all times.
- Don’t swim alone – always swim with a friend and select swimming sites that have onsite lifeguards.
- Avoid alcohol – alcohol use is involved in up to 70% of deaths associated with water activities. Avoid alcohol and drink cooled water to stay hydrated.
Eat Healthy and Safe
Each year, 48 million people in the U.S. get sick from contaminated food. Warmer weather increases the risk of food-borne illnesses, such as upset stomach, vomiting and diarrhea. Planning a BBQ or picnic? It’s very important to take extra precautions to prepare food safely in the summer.
- Keep food in a cooler/refrigerator - increased temperature accelerates the growth of bacteria in food and causes the food to spoil quickly. Keep food in the fridge or bring a cooler to hold the food if you're going to a cookout.
- Cook all foods to the proper temperatures - cook food to high enough temperature to kill harmful bacteria and other pathogens. Use a food thermometer to ensure that the food, especially meat and poultry is properly cooked.
- Eat plenty of fresh fruits and vegetables - walk down to the farmers markets to get the freshest and most delicious fruits and vegetables the summer season has to offer.
- Wash hands before eating - Do what mom always says: wash your hands!
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