Walk Safely This School Year

Whether you are excited or not, school is right around the corner! It is time to start thinking about how your child is going to get there. Walking is a great way for them to get exercise! You may ask yourself; how can I keep my children safe as a pedestrian? The idea of not always being there to make sure your child is crossing a street safely or being able to ensure that cars are driving safely may be scary, but you can do your part and educate your child on pedestrian safety.

Eliminate Distractions

  • Take headphones off or turn down the volume on electronics before crossing a street.
  • If you see a friend that is not paying attention or that is distracted, get their attention to keep them safe.
  • If your kids bring a cellphone with them on walks, be sure to teach them that they need to be in a safe location before using the phone.

Putting it into Action

  • Teach children to look left, right then left again before crossing a street and keep scanning as they cross the road.
  • It is safest to remain on sidewalks, paths, or areas designated for pedestrians. Avoid walking on the road or in the bike lane.
  • Teach children not to run across streets or in parking lots.
  • If children are walking when it is dark out, encourage them to wear bright or reflective clothing, or even LED lights you clip on to your clothing.
  • Children should not cross-roads alone if they are 10 years old or younger, as they are not typically able to judge the distance or speed of oncoming traffic.
  • Teach your children what different traffic lights mean, so they can better understand what is going on around them.

Keeping Others Safe

  • When you are in the car be sure to look out for pedestrians, just as you’d like people to look out for you.
  • When driving put your phone or other electronics away so that your attention is on the road.
  • Be a good role-model. If there are children or other adults in your car, be sure to practice safe habits so that they too can practice them.

Start the conversation now and practice walking the route to help both you and your child feel more comfortable as school begins.

Celebrate National Hydration Day

Each year on June 23rd the U.S. celebrates National Hydration Day, because it is an important part of our daily habits. Although it may seem minimal if you seem to forget to drink water or hydrate properly, it can lead to serious health implications.

National Hydration Day was formed in honor of a late football coach named Victor Hawkins who was the creator of a mouthguard that hydrated players, in order to keep his players hydrated on the field. The company known as SafeTGard that now sells his invention, started the National Hydration Day to continue on his legacy and keep others healthy and hydrated.

With summer approaching, it is crucial that you encourage both yourself and your children to drink plenty of water. Regardless of your reason for engaging in activity or being out in the sun, it is extremely important that you are keeping yourself hydrated. Regardless of whether you are playing sports, just stepping outside to get fresh air, or even soaking up the sun, drinking enough water is a huge part in deterring dehydration, heat stroke and other harmful issues. Now, let’s look at reasons to increase hydration and ways to do so!

Why Should We Hydrate?

It keeps us healthy!

Making sure that we are eating healthy, working out and getting good sleep are all aspects of good health. If you are dehydrated, then these actions or habits won’t make much of a difference. Drinking water allows for our bodies to have the necessary power to get through the heat of a summer day or a hard workout.

It encourages us to make other healthy choices!

You may notice that when you are properly hydrating you feel great, because when you are dehydrated you may experience headaches, exhaustion and dizziness. Forming the habit of drinking ample amounts of water can feel like an accomplishment and you may start incorporating other healthy habits.

It shows us how important it is to hydrate!

Hopefully you never have and never will experience severe dehydration, but it is important to know how easy it can happen. Nobody can avoid this if they are not hydrating, regardless of our age, fitness level or how me may feel. Our bodies depend on us to drink water and keep ourselves as healthy as we can.

How Can We Make Sure We Hydrate?

Figure out how much you need!

You can simply google how much water you need based on personal factors, also check this for your children. Figuring out how much water you need to drink daily and making it a goal can make it easier to keep up on.

Tell others to stay hydrated!

Giving your friends or family members nice reminders to also stay hydrated is a great way to keep others healthy, but it also reminds you to hydrate more. It is easy to forget to drink enough water each day, unless you have a helpful friend to remind you.

Make water fun with new flavors!

Many people don’t like to drink water due to the taste of it. You can make this a fun activity with your children and increase desire to drink water. Try infusing your water with different fruits such as strawberries, lemons, or cucumber slices.

Take this summer and make it full of fun and hydration! Teach your children how important it is that they are drinking enough water, and allow for them to learn what a difference it can make in their health.

Winter Sports Safety

With winter at its peak and the chance to enjoy a few more weeks of the winter sports activities it has to offer, it could be time to ask, what are your favorite winter sports to engage in? It may be sledding, skiing, ice skating, or perhaps even hockey. Although these sports present us with excitement and the ability to try new activities, it is important that we remain aware of the need for safety while doing so.

Every year nearly 200,000 people receive treatment as a result of injuries due to winter sports. There are numerous injuries that can occur from engaging in winter sports. These can include concussions, strains, fractures, dislocations, and other injuries. Each sport varies in its likelihood of a certain injury occurring, for example, skiers tend to experience knee injuries as a result of a damaged ACL (anterior cruciate ligament). Other sports such as sledding tend to result in head injuries and broken bones. Although it may not be realistic to entirely eliminate the chance of injury, there are a few ways you can limit the probability and enjoy fun, new, and safe winter sports!

One relieving aspect of this is that there are cautionary steps you can take to lower the chances of injury. Let’s take a look at ways you can prevent winter sport related injuries and continue engaging in the hobbies you love.

Slow to Start: Prior to engaging in strenuous sports such as snowboarding or skiing, try warming up. Allow for your muscles, ligaments, and tendons to loosen up through light stretching before taking part in the activity.

Staying in Shape: Ensuring that you do your best to keep your muscles and body in shape can allow for you to jump into winter sports much quicker. Focusing on increasing core strength, upper and lower body strength, and balance can lower risk of injury. When our bodies are in shape and can provide us with a stable base, we are at our best and less injury prone.

Following the Rules: With each winter sport comes different rules to stay safe, and it is important to research the activity you are engaging in prior to. If there are signs when you are skiing or snowboarding, be sure to pay attention to what they say.

Safe to Use Equipment: In any winter sport you are destined to need some sort of equipment, and before doing so, test the equipment to make sure it is safe to use. For example, with sledding, make sure that the sled has no visible safety hazards, and that you have the ability to stop yourself when using.

Falling Correctly: Falling directly onto your elbows, shoulders, and wrists can cause serious injuries. Learning from an informational video or instructor on how to fall correctly can limit the severity of fall related injuries.

Taking into account these tips and tricks to prevent winter related sports injuries will not entirely limit the potential for injury, but it will lower the risk. Even if precautions are taken, injuries may occur, and it is important to receive treatment from a doctor as soon as it happens. Following injuries, you may need rehabilitation, and you can eventually return to those winter sports we all love.

A Resolution for Safety

Happy New Year and new decade! Wow, I cannot believe I am saying that. I enjoy this time of year as it allows me to step back and look at the accomplishments, big and small, over the last year plus all of the joys to come in this year.

Subsequently, my mind often goes wild with all of the New Years resolutions I can make. There are so many options; take up a new hobby, volunteer more, complain less. To a point where it can get overwhelming.

One resolution that is always worth making, and keeping, is protecting my family from accidental injuries. This can also be daunting unless wrapping everyone in bubble wrap is an option.

Safe Kids Worldwide has come up with a solution. It is called My High 5. They know how much safety advice is out there and figuring out what is relevant can be tough. With their My High 5 you are able to pick and choose what is important to you and your family.

Check it out and pick your top 5 safety priorities. Not only will you feel accomplished but also your mind will be set at ease that your family is that much safer. Start the year off right with a committment to safety.

Click the picture below or here to get started!

Taking Care of Grandchildren

Being a grandparent is one of the most rewarding parts of getting older. As new research is constantly being done and new technology appears, things have changed since raising kids yourself. For example, car seats used to be used to keep kids out of the drivers seat, not necessarily to keep them safe. The great thing is that due to this research and technology, childhood deaths due to accidental injuries have been cut in half over the last 30 years! Here are a few reminders to keep your grandbabies safe while in your care are:

  • Keep your medications out of reach. Many medications look like candy to young children and can be misused by curious teens. When visiting or if they come over, go ahead and put your medications somewhere safe. If you keep them in your purse, put your purse out of reach.
  • Get their car seat inspected. 90% of car seats are used incorrectly. Go to an inspection station and have them teach you how to install the car seat properly – they can even show you how the child should be properly restrained in the seat! To find inspection stations near you, head to our inspection station list here
  • Put baby back to sleep. Any time an infant is sleeping, put them down on their back on a flat surface such as a crib or playpen. This is one of the proven ways we can help prevent sudden infant death syndrome, or SIDS. Also, make sure they are in their own sleeping space, are not covered with blankets (usually a sleep sack will work best so it can not cover their face while they sleep but can stay warm) and do not let them sleep with stuffed animals or other fluffy items in the bed.