Posted by PlaySmart on May 30, 2013
We have all been waiting for the summer for what seems like forever. The children are all starting to play outside until the streetlights come on, which is getting later and later each day and everyone is in a generally happier mood.
With keeping everyone happy at the heart off this post, let’s take a moment to talk about the importance of sun cream and general summer safety in parks for our children. With everyone increasing the amount of time they are spending outside in the sun it’s definitely becoming more and more of a necessity, especially for our children to stay safe.
Sun cream contains either minerals or chemicals (depending on which one you buy), which are designed to absorb, scatter or reflect the sun’s U.V radiation. It is generally preferred to go for a mineral sun cream over the chemical alternatives, this is due to the theory of certain chemicals within the cream soaking into the skin and having adverse effects. It is advised for children under the age of six months to only use a very small amount of sun cream in small patches and if possible, to keep them out of the sun completely to ensure summer safety in parks.
Essentially any time you are exposed to the sun you should ideally be wearing some sort of sun block. However the most important times in the day to make sure you have protection is between the hours of 10 am and 3 pm, this is when the sun is strongest and when the most damage is done. However, it is important to remember that the suns U.V rays pretty much stay the same regardless of cloud cover and time of day, even though the sun is stronger within the aforementioned period.
If you can make some sort of game out of applying sun cream then the children won’t see it as so much of a chore and will be more inclined to apply it without hassle. Make anything fun and children will love doing it. One of the best ways to get the initial layer applied is to apply it when the children first get up, that way they are still sleepy and there is a little more tolerance there for application! This way they can get about playing outside as soon as they are done with breakfast. Whether play time is out in the garden, by the beach or in a playground, suncream application needs to be repeated every 2 hours or every time they exit the water. The same goes for us adults too!
General outdoor safety should not be overlooked either. As the children are playing out more and more with the good weather, it poses more opportunity for trips, falls and general accidents meaning that safety precautions are in much higher demand. We can’t wrap our children up in bubble wrap but there are a few small things you can do to prevent accidents and to make you best equipped for when they do happen.
To increase summer safety in parks, encourage children to play on soft surfaces instead of on concrete or harder flooring. Many parks and playgrounds now use grass mats around the play areas to give a cushioned base on turfed areas and to also keep the integrity of the ground intact making for a more stable footing.
Teach children about road safety as early as possible. Whenever children are around roads of any description they should be supervised, but if for any reason children should find themselves by a road then at least they will have an insight in how to stay safe.
Always carry a basic first aid kit in the car or in your handbag/rucksack. This is a complete godsend if anything should go wrong. When a child takes a nasty fall or knock, it is comforting for both the child and the parent to be able to do something about it there and then. Just an antiseptic wipe or a plaster can make all the difference and prevent further infection to a fresh cut or graze.
For more information on how PlaySmart UK and their grass mats can help increase summer safety in parks, please feel free to call us on: 01564 742811