There are so many reasons kids should play outdoors, from the gains in physical health to the mental health assistance being outside offers. It’s great for kids to be outside when they can, but it’s also important for them to know how to stay safe. Follow a few safety rules to make outside time the best it can be for your child.
Don’t Play in the Street
Backyards or fenced areas are ideal for a child who wants to play outside. However, not everyone has a large outside play area that is completely cut off from traffic. That’s why it’s necessary to teach your kids the importance of not playing in the street. Being hit by cars is the leading cause of death from unintentional injuries for children ages five to nine. If your child has to play in the front yard or in another area near a street, make sure they stay far away from the street. Kids should also know never to cross a street without looking both ways.
Everyone knows to put on sunscreen when they are spending a day at the pool. However, it’s just as important for your kids to get used to putting on sunscreen anytime they are outside. Sunburns are bad, but there is also no such thing as a safe tan. Sunscreen protects skin from sunspots, wrinkles, premature aging, and most importantly, skin cancer. Make sure kids know to put on sunscreen daily and to wear protective clothing when they can.
Your child should have their own water container or bottle on them at all times if they are going to play outside. They should also hydrate before heading outdoors and remember to take water breaks often. Dehydration is dangerous for anyone, but it can be especially bad for kids. Children get distracted easily when playing with friends, but they need to make sure to stay hydrated. Remind them to drink water before they are thirsty, and explain the symptoms of dehydration to your kids so they will know the signs. Make sure to offer them more water when they arrive back home.
Dressing for the weather is essential if your child wants to stay safe outside. A child should not go outside in warm weather wearing a sweater that will cause them to overheat. They also don’t need to be wearing shorts in snow and risk getting frostbite. If in doubt about what the weather has in store, dress your child in layers they can easily peel off. This is a great way to make sure they are prepared for any weather at any time. Tell them to carry a backpack in case they want to bring an extra sweater or jacket.
Outdoor fun is one of the best forms of entertainment for kids. Just make sure they know how to stay safe outdoors by training them early in the habits you want them to perfect and even pass along to other family members or friends.
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