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Jun 13, 2019

Brookyln beach
Brooklyn, New York

Summer is the season of outdoor fun - sports, vacations and barbecues. As children of all ages enjoy these outdoor activities, the risk for injury can also increase.

“We see a lot of kids in the Emergency Department during the summer with injuries and accidents that could have been prevented,” explains Dr. Chistopher Kelly, chief, Pediatric Emergency Medicine, at NewYork-Presbyterian Brooklyn Methodist Hospital. “It is important to take the necessary precautions to ensure our children remain safe while having fun.”

The following tips from Dr. Kelly will keep your kids safe and healthy at the beach, by the pool and in the City’s parks.

Sun Safety

  •  Apply sunscreen. For the best protection, apply sunscreen to children at least 30 minutes before going outside and reapply every two hours. Our dermatologists strongly recommend using a sunscreen with an SPF 15 or greater for all skin types. Be sure to cover all areas including the top of their feet, which is often forgotten.
  • Seek shade. If children are playing outside during the middle of the day, when UV rays are strongest, be sure they seek shade to prevent sunburn. Hats are a great way to provide shade for the face and scalp.
  • Wear sunglasses. UV rays can damage your child’s eyes. Choose sunglasses that block both UVA and UVB rays, to help prevent cataracts later in life.

Heat Safety

  • Stay hydrated. Extreme heat can dehydrate children quickly. Encourage kids to drink water often. When both the humidity and the temperature are very high, organized sports can be dangerous because the normal sweating process, which cools us, doesn’t happen as effectively. It is very important to pre-hydrate and take frequent hydration breaks, especially on these days.

Water Safety

  • Teach kids to swim. Although formal swimming lessons don’t prevent drowning, they are important to give children more confidence in the water. The best safety is constant supervision when children are around any body of water.
  • Learn CPR. If a child does fall into the water, seconds count. CPR has proved to save lives. The faster CPR is performed, the better the chance of survival.

Playground Safety

  • Check equipment. An adult should check the playground’s condition prior to playtime to ensure the area is well-maintained. The surface of the playground should have safety-tested mats or loose-fill materials.
  • Adult supervision. Falls on the playground are a common cause of injury. An adult should be present when children are playing on the playground, to ensure that if a child falls or gets injured, immediate action can be taken.

Safety on Wheels

  • Wear a helmet. Protective gear should be worn at all times. Children should NEVER ride a bicycle, skateboard, scooter or skates without a helmet, no matter how short the ride. When necessary for the activity, make sure your children wear helmets, shin guards, knee and elbow pads. Make sure the equipment fits well. Consider visiting a bicycle store to find the best sized equipment in order to prevent accidents and make the ride more comfortable.

About NewYork-Presbyterian Brooklyn Methodist Hospital

NewYork-Presbyterian Brooklyn Methodist Hospital has been providing outstanding medical care to the surrounding communities for over 135 years. Located in Park Slope, Brooklyn, the 591-bed teaching hospital, in collaboration with Weill Cornell Medicine, provides specialized services in advanced and minimally invasive surgery, neurosciences, orthopedics, digestive and liver disorders, and cancer and cardiac care. The Hospital’s Emergency Department provides separate areas for adult and pediatric patients, as well as a separate women-only area. More than 5,000 babies are delivered annually in the Hospital’s Department of Maternal Child Health. The Hospital houses Centers of Excellence for bariatric surgery and breast imaging, a cancer program accredited by the Commission on Cancer, and a New York State-designated stroke center. NewYork-Presbyterian Brooklyn Methodist Hospital is a member of the NewYork-Presbyterian Regional Hospital Network. For more information or to find a physician, please call 718-499-2273 or visit nyp.org/brooklyn.

Media Contact:

Jacqueline Shutack Wong     718-670-1065     jas9205@nyp.org