Eight Tips for a Healthy Summer Picnic
What are Some Picnic Tips to Keep your Picnic Healthy and Safe?
Avoid Possible Burn Hazards
An open grill, or barbecue pit, requires safety precautions especially where children are concerned. Be sure the children are playing far enough away from an open flame to avoid any possible burn accidents. Children are too busy having fun and playing to watch out for any possible hazards.
Maintain Safe Handling of Raw Meat
Whenever handling raw meat for a picnic that is to be cooked over an open grill be sure you wash your hands thoroughly afterwards to prevent contamination and cross contamination of other picnic food. It’s important to remind children not to touch, or handle any raw meat that may be set out on a picnic table waiting to be cooked, or grilled, as well. If, however, they do handle raw meat they should immediately wash their hands thoroughly.
Avoid Poisonous Plants
It’s best to check the area you chose for your outdoor picnic so that is not too close to a heavily wooded area, rich with foliage. That area may have poisonous plants growing, such as poison ivy, or poison oak, which can pose a problem for children, in particular, who probably won’t be cautious of which plants to avoid.
Don’t Forget the Sunscreen
It’s sometimes easy to forget the sunscreen when you’re headed out to enjoy a picnic. The fact is it’s best to always wear sunscreen protection with an SPF factor of at least 30 or more when planning outdoor activities to avoid the dangerous UV rays of the hot summer sun and keep your skin healthy. Children’s delicate skin is especially vulnerable to the elements of the hot, summer sun since sunburn can quickly occur when no sunscreen has been directly applied on your children’s skin.
Summer activities require more hydration than any other time of the year when the heat and humidity levels are at their highest. Therefore, adults and children need to keep well hydrated in the summer at picnics, and any other outdoor activities. It’s important to remember children in particular may forget to take time out when they are playing and physically active, to drink some liquids to replenish the fluids in their bodies. Typically, children do not adjust as well to hotter temperatures than adults do, and therefore, need to replenish their liquids more frequently.
If your summer picnic includes a spot near a beach, river, or pool facility, remind your children to refrain from getting too close to the water unless, of course, they are under adult supervision. Typically, children may be attracted to play near water, and accidental drowning can occur in even small amounts of water. In fact, drowning is the second leading cause of death for children under 14 years of age.
Hand Sanitizer and Insect Repellents
It’s a good idea to keep hand sanitizer available for the whole family to ensure everyone’s hands are clean before eating food at the picnic. Different picnic area surfaces such as trash cans, restrooms, and even playground facilities may harbor bacteria and germs that could make your family ill if proper precautions aren’t taken.
It’s advisable to keep some kind of insect repellent, or bug spray handy at your summer picnic as well to protect our from annoying mosquitoes, including some that carry the West Nile virus, or any other insects that can cause bites, itching, and possible further infection from scratching.
It may be best to avoid drinking from outdoor water faucets since they can be a breeding ground for germs. It may be wise to bring along bottled water, or juice drinks, to avoid any bacteria present on public surfaces.
The summer is a great time for adults and children to enjoy a family picnic, keeping in mind there are a few tips to follow to ensure your family has a safe outing.