Summer Safety

By Cole Purvis

Summer is a wonderful time for outdoor activity and some fun in the sun. However, it also brings a host of hazards that families should be aware of. From sunburns to choking, there are a variety of potential dangers that can cause harm to children. Therefore, it is important to discuss some of the most common summer safety concerns and provide tips on how to avoid them.

Heat Stroke

Heat stroke is a serious condition that occurs when the body’s self-regulated cooling mechanisms fail, causing the one’s temperature to rise above 104°F, according to the Mayo Clinic. Children are particularly vulnerable to heat stroke because their bodies are not as efficient at regulating temperature as adults.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), an average of 702 heat-related deaths occur each year. To help prevent heat stroke, it’s important to stay hydrated and avoid strenuous activities during the hottest part of the day. Wearing loose, light-colored clothing can also help keep the body cool.


Sunburns are a common summer hazard that can cause pain, discomfort, and increase the risk of skin cancer later in life. According to the American Academy of Dermatology, just one severe sunburn in childhood can double a person’s risk of developing melanoma later in life.

To prevent sunburns, it’s important to wear protective clothing, including hats and sunglasses, and apply sunscreen with a SPF 30 or higher every two hours. As noted by The Skin Cancer Foundation, regular daily use of even SPF 15 sunscreen can lower your risk of getting melanoma by as much as 50%.


Bees, wasps, and other insects are more active during the summer months, which increases the risk of stings.
Although most stings are not serious, some people may have an allergic reaction that requires medical attention.

It’s a good idea to keep food and drinks covered when outside, and avoid walking barefoot in areas where bees and wasps may nest. It’s is also important to teach children (and remind ourselves) to stay still and be quiet if a bee or wasp is near, as swatting at the insect can provoke an attack. If someone is stung and has an allergic reaction, seek medical attention immediately. It’s helpful to carry an epinephrine auto-injector (EpiPen) if you or a loved one has a history of severe allergic reactions to insect stings.


Summer barbecues and picnics are a fun way to enjoy the outdoors, but they can also pose a choking hazard for young children. Hot dogs, grapes, and popcorn are some of the most common foods that can cause put children at an increased risk of choking on food. To help prevent this, it’s important to supervise young children while they eat. Be sure to also avoid giving them foods that are small, round or hard.


Summer thunderstorms are accompanied by dangerous lightning strikes. According to the National Weather Service (NWS), lightning kills an average of 27 people per year in the United States. To stay safe during a thunderstorm, it’s important to seek shelter indoors or in a car with a metal roof. Avoid standing under trees or near tall objects, as they can attract lightning.

As summer moves into full swing, kids will be spending increasingly more time enjoying the outdoors, so be mindful of the hazards that accompany it. Just a little bit of forward-thinking and thoughtful preparation can make all the difference in keeping your summer as safe and fun as can be!


Related Articles:

Summer Time Salads

Yummy Summer Drinks