School is out, schedules have loosened up, and parents and kids alike are turning to phones, tablets, gaming systems, TV and movies for summer entertainment. But the experts agree that too much time spent on digital devices can hold back a child’s development. So what can Maine parents do to balance screen time with real-world summertime adventures? Continue reading
Winters in Maine are long and snowy but summers come and go in the blink of an eye – it doesn’t seem fair! When the sun is shining it’s hard to keep your kids indoors: Vax Maine Kids is here to refresh your memory on a few essentials of summer safety, so you don’t have to think twice before sending your kids out to play!
Swimming and Boating Safety
Did you know that drowning is the #1 cause of accidental injury and death among children? (AAP)
According to the American Academy of Pediatrics, children over the age of four years should take swimming lessons before participating in any water activity. It is important to remember that even if your child has completed swimming lessons, there is still a risk of drowning; infants and toddlers should remain within an arm’s length of a responsible adult while in the water.
Ocean and Lake Safety
- Children who do not know how to swim very well should wear an appropriate life jacket for their age, weight and height when they are in and around water; Maine law requires children age 10 and under to wear a life jacket at all times on moving boats (ferries are an exception).
- Feet first! Never allow your child to dive head first into the water – you never know what they could be diving into.
- Pay close attention to children in the water – waves can unexpectedly knock them over.
- Check swimming areas for ocean life such as water plants and animals that could be dangerous to swimmers.
- Have your child wear water shoes to protect their feet from rocks, trash or broken glass.
- Follow basic boating safety tips, including keeping hands and feet inside the boat at all times, not swimming near the propeller, or while it is moving, not running on the boat and not drinking alcohol while driving the boat.
- A good list of these tips can be found on the SafeKids Worldwide website.