The Summer and Your Child's Safety
Summer is here again, and with the children now out of school, there is always the need to remind parents and caregivers about how important it is for kids to be properly supervised at home. It is said that fewer accidents take place when the children are school than when they are at home. Therefore, it cannot be overemphasized the need to ensure that kids are given the attention, love, and care that they so rightly deserve. It was just a few days ago that I read about a child who was playing on a piece of log in the woods when it shifted, and before you knew it, the child was crushed to dead. In yet another recent report, a 2 year old child’s body was pulled out of a backyard pool after he fell in while wondering off by himself around the pool area. These are examples of two tragic stories that maybe could have been prevented had certain precautionary measures were put in place. Some people might think that the kind of advice that will be given in this article is overused, but I dare say that if we are still having the kind of stories I mentioned earlier, then it must be that there are still some parents who are not taking their parenting job as seriously as they should. With the age of parents and grand parents getting younger and younger, it is even more necessary that these safety tips be given more prominence than ever before.
Several researches that were carried out in North America have found the following as the top 7 children’s safety problems:
2) Hot cars
4) Children left alone at home
5) Farm accidents
6) Kids on sidewalks
7) Pills in unlocked medicine cabinet
It cannot be overstressed how important it is for children to wear well fitted helmets when cycling. Children are often called “copy cats”; they do what they see their parents do. Therefore, parents need to model the right kind of behavior when riding a bike; they need to demonstrate this by wearing a helmet when they are cycling. When your children see you do this, they will want to do the correct thing – wear a helmet.
I was surprised when I saw this so high on the list. One would think that after all this is a matter of common sense. But, sometimes parents misjudge the temperature, and leave their children in a vehicle while they go to run a quick errand, and before you know it, they have a tragedy on their hands when they return to their vehicles. So, the simple advice is, do not leave you child in a vehicle by themselves at any time!
The temperatures for the summer months have been forecasted to be hotter than usual which makes the need to use the backyard swimming pools in a higher demand. With temperatures over 30 Celsius, swimming, and frequent pool parties will no doubt become the norm for many families. Swimming is a fun activity and is a very effective way to cool ourselves doing on hot days. Many community pools, wading pads, and splash pads will be opened to the public as one way to help children stay cool. Usually, these pools are safe and carefully monitored and are safe for our kids.
Unfortunately, the same cannot be said about many of our backyard pools because they are not always properly supervised by adults. Parents need to take a more proactive role in the supervision of their kids when they go swimming in our backyard pools.
The operative words are constant supervision. The danger is only few seconds away when we do not pay attention to our children. Someone once said, “Worry is good if it leads to thoughts and actions that make the child safer. So here are a few tips for parents with backyard pools.
· Make sure there is proper fencing around the pool area
· Have someone to be responsible for the supervision of the kids when their friends are over for swimming
· If you are the one hosting the pool party, take some time when all the guests have arrived to go over the rules for children use of the pool.
Children left alone at home
With the increase in the number of single parent families, this has given rise to a number of instances when kids are left on their own while the only bread winner goes out to work. Many times these families are not able to afford day care fees nor can they afford to pay babysitters; so these children are left alone at home. It is while some of these children are left unsupervised at home when the different tragedies occur. So, again, the gentle advice is, do not leave children unattended at home.
Unless you are a farmer’s kid or live in a rural area of your community, you might not understand how living on or playing in a farming area may involve some risks. But, put on the thinking cap of a child; in their minds they perceive everything as an opportunity for adventure and fun. They are not thinking about the “what ifs”. This is why parents must carefully instruct children to stay away from ponds, lakes, and other areas that are heavily forested.
Kids on the Sidewalk
Again, children should not be allowed to walk unattended on the sidewalks. They should be accompanied by an adult and should walk away from the flow of traffic on the side of the road where they are facing the oncoming vehicles. Remember to hold their hands as they walk with you.
Pills in Unlocked Medicine Cabinets
Children are naturally curious creatures. They always want to find out about what is perceived to be hidden from them. So, grandparents remember to lock the medicine cabinets and keep them out of the view of your precious grandchildren when they come visiting this summer holiday!
Remember parents it is better to err on the side of over cautiousness, than to be left saying I wish…………
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© 2012 jean2011
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