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Feature Article Warm weather safety tips for parents

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Warmer weather typically means fresh air, camping trips and fun in the sun and water. Keep your children safe this summer with these safety tips from Letrice Blair, MD, of Mid-Valley Children’s Clinic in Albany:

Prevent second story falls: Window screens alone will not prevent a child from falling from second story windows. Instead, leave windows reachable by children closed, or install window stops or operable window guards and don’t leave windows open more than 4 inches.

Practice water safety: From a backyard swimming pool to a weekend at the beach or lake, always be aware of the dangers of water with young children. Even if your child can swim, never allow swimming alone or unsupervised. Always empty or secure your pool, and make sure your child’s life vest is properly fitted.

Use your head when biking: Accidents happen. So make sure your child is sporting a properly fitted bike helmet, which is the single most effective way to avoid head injuries from bicycle crashes. Let your children pick their own helmets and they will be more likely to wear them regularly.
 
Never forget sunscreen: Regardless of age, never leave the house without first applying a sunscreen with a minimum of 15 sun protective factor (SPF). Younger children need additional protection from the sun, so a higher SPF sunscreen should be applied every few hours. Don’t forget a sunhat, too

Avoid burns: Whether you’re roasting marshmallows or grilling your favorite meal, avoid painful burns by communicating with children the dangers of hot surfaces. Never leave your children unsupervised, even for a moment, and always have an extinguisher and items on hand to treat a burn.

Letrice Blair, MD, is a pediatrician who works with infants, children and teens from birth to age 18 at Mid-Valley Children’s Clinic in Albany. For more information, or to make an appointment, call 541-812-5111.