Wrap up Summer Safely with Tips From Thurston County Public Health

girl scout camp
The girls at Camp River Ranch know the best way to cool off on those warm summer days. Photo credit: Girl Scouts of Western Washington

Submitted by Thurston County Public Health

There are lots of things to keep in mind as the Northwest summer begins to wind down. The wildfire smoke has lifted for now, but the heat may return, and with it a number of risks that could impact our safety. Here are some tips to help you stay on top of your family’s health and safety, beat the heat, and get ready for the start of the new school year.

  • Photo credit: Darcy Kauffman.

    Keep a close eye on kids when they’re swimming. Swim where lifeguards are available, and use life vests on kids who aren’t strong swimmers. Life vests are required for kids on boats. Remember: People in danger of drowning are focused on keeping their heads above water to get air. They often don’t struggle or call for help.

  • Sunburn is more than just painful. It’s tied to skin cancer. Prevent sunburn by covering up, staying in the shade, using sun hats, and sun glasses and with ample use of safe sunblock.
  • Protect yourself and your family from heatstroke. Try to avoid heavy work during the hottest part of the day. Loose, cool clothing, shade and drinking plenty of water will help protect you too. If signs of heatstroke develop (headache, nausea, dizziness), take immediate steps.
  • ECLIPSE safety! If you’re planning on watching the eclipse, follow NASA’s safety recommendations. Looking directly at the sun can permanently damage your eyes.
  • Get caught up on immunizations. Kids will need vaccinations before starting school. Measles, Tetanus, and Pertussis (Whooping Cough), are important to protect against in Washington, among other diseases and infections. For older teens, an HPV series protects against certain cancers. Vaccines are offered by your health care provider, and often, at pharmacies.

Whether you’re out and about in the sun, or chilling out in the shade, be sure to give a few moments of your time to keeping yourself and your loved ones healthy and safe.

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