GENESEO, N.Y., June 16, 2023 – With spring coming to an end and schools set to break for the summer, the Livingston County Department of Health is encouraging residents to prioritize safety when engaging in various outdoor activities.
Whether on the water, hiking, biking, working in your yard or enjoying nature, it is important to take precautions to safeguard against overexposure to the sun, insect bites, injuries and other potential hazards.
Insect Repellant: There are many insect repellants that are safe to use for children age two and older. Be sure you pick repellants with DEET, picaridin (KBR 3023), IR 3535, or citronella oil. Based on Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommendations, if you use a repellant with DEET, be sure the product has less than 20% DEET, do not spray near the mouth or eyes and follow manufacturer’s directions. Do not use repellants with DEET on infants. Instead, dress your child in clothing that covers their arms and legs and cover strollers and baby carriers with mosquito netting.
Water Safety: Never let your child play in or near water without an adult present. Even if children know how to swim, they may still be at risk. Also remember that infants, toddlers and young children can drown in as little as two inches of water. Make sure that children wear life jackets in and around natural bodies of water, even if they know how to swim. Pools should have a four-sided fence, separating the pool from other structures and preventing accidents.
Sun Safety: Overexposure to sun and ultraviolet light increases the risk of developing skin cancer. Regular daily use of SPF 15 sunscreen can reduce your risk by 40-50 percent, according to the Skin Cancer Foundation. Sunscreen should be applied 30-45 minutes before exposure to the sun and should be reapplied every two hours or sooner after swimming or sweating. While SPF 15 is the minimum, for extended time in the sun, it is recommended that you use sunscreen of at least SPF 30. Keep in mind, the CDC does not recommend using sunscreen on babies younger than six months old. Instead, aim to keep them out of the sun and use protective clothing when necessary.
Bicycle Safety: All children 14 years of age and younger are required by law to wear bicycle helmets to protect against serious injury. Based on data from the Children’s Safety Network, if all children age 14 and younger wore helmets when biking nearly 300 deaths could be prevented each year. While not required by law, it is strongly encouraged that individuals 14 and older also wear a helmet when biking in addition to learning proper hand signals and wearing reflectors when riding at night.
Learn more tips to ensure a safe summer by visiting the Livingston County Department of Health’s website or by calling (585) 243-7299.
Stay up-to-date with the latest news, events and more by following Livingston County on Twitter, Instagram, Facebook and LinkedIn.
About Livingston County:
Founded in 1821, Livingston County, N.Y., is comprised of more than 61,000 residents in 17 towns located across 631 square miles of the Finger Lakes region.