Sometimes we have so much fun in the summer that we forget to take the necessary precautions to protect ourselves properly.
Here are some ways to enjoy the great outdoors with a dose of common sense and planning to have plenty of safe fun this summer.
Keep Bugs at Bay
Insects can ruin a good time outside almost as quickly as a summer storm. Further, insects carry a growing list of diseases such as Lyme, West Nile and Zika. Be prepared for mosquitoes, ticks and other pests before your camping trip or outdoor excursion.
- Cover up exposed skin with long-sleeved shirts and pants, especially when walking through narrow trails in dense woods or areas with tall grass.
- Spray skin and clothing with insect repellent to discourage insects from setting up camp on your epidermis. The Centers for Disease Control suggests using products with at least 20% DEET for the best protection.
- Don’t forget to protect your pets by making sure their flea and tick protection is up to date. Visually inspect them after walks to look for ticks and other insects.
Skin Protection is In
You may like to catch some rays at the beach or around the pool, but remember to protect your skin first by applying a liberal layer of sunscreen. Here are some tips from the American Academy of Dermatology:
- Apply a water-resistant sunscreen with an SPF of 30 or higher that offers both UVA and UVB protection.
- Use an ounce (enough to fill your palm) to protect exposed areas of your body.
- Reapply sunscreen every two hours or immediately after swimming or sweating heavily.
Find Your Way on the Trails
A good hike is an invigorating way to leave the hustle bustle behind and enjoy nature, but remember some common sense practices to keep you safe and happy on the trails.
- Don’t forget basics such as water, food, compass, insect repellent and rain gear.
- Hike during the day to avoid having to find your way in the dark or dealing with nocturnal animals or insects. Set a turnaround time to ensure you give yourself enough time to get back before nightfall.
- Tell someone where you’re hiking and what time you plan on returning. If they don’t hear back from you around that time, they can take appropriate measures to check on your well-being.