To help, here's a list of summer safety tips from experts:
Sun safety 101
Parents are getting better about making sure their children are slathered in sunscreen and wearing Rash Guard surf shirts, but often forget to practice what they preach. Parents need to set the example when it comes to sunscreen.
Parents and children should apply at least 1 ounce -- enough to fill a shot glass -- of sunscreen 15 to 30 minutes before heading outside, covering all exposed parts of the body. Reapply every two hours or after getting out of the water.
Aim for sunscreen with an "SPF" rating of 30, and try to use broad-spectrum sunscreen, which blocks UVA and UVB rays. Water- and sweat- resistant sunscreens are great, but make sure to reapply after about 45 minutes in the water, since that's when they start to lose their effectiveness.
If a child gets sunburned, parents can use aloe or anti-inflammatories, such as ibuprofen, to lessen discomfort, but avoid using topical ointments that have lidocaine or benzocaine or topical anesthetics, since they can often be too potent.
Cool baths and moisturizer can help hydrate the skin, and putting the moisturizer in the refrigerator can provide cooling relief.
If the skin develops blisters, don't break them.
If a child has a bad burn, or if the burn is accompanied by headache, chills or fever, call a pediatrician immediately.
Everyone should wear DEET-based mosquito repellent outside in the summer, although parents should look for repellent that contains no more than 7 percent DEET.
Parents also should think outside the box when looking for standing water, where mosquitoes breed.
Check the backs of little riding cars, playhouses and wagons. Another common mosquito-breeding ground is tire swings.
Families also are advised to empty wading pools to eliminate stagnant water.
Children who can't swim need to wear properly fitting life jackets both in pools and in open water. Children ages 11 years and younger are required by state law to wear life jackets while boating.
While life jackets are good preventive tools, nothing is better than attentive parents.
In our region, summer is pool season, but is your backyard oasis ready for a dip? Here are some quick tips from the home experts at kudzu.com that will help keep your pool in pristine condition for its busiest months of the year.
Examine the pump: Check for leaks, loud noises and irregular behavior. Pumps can last 10 years, but their life expectancy will be shortened if not maintained.
Clean the pool's filter: Regular cleanings help extend the life of the pump and help improve water quality.
Check pool liners for holes: Small punctures should be patched immediately. They can quickly become tears that could require liner replacement.
Perform regular water tests: Keep the water's pH, alkalinity and other levels in check. That helps ensure that the water stays crystal clear. It also avoids such side effects as green hair and burning eyes.
Do an inspection: Inspect slides, diving boards and ladders. These items can become loose or weak over time, creating hazards.