Tips for staying safe this holiday weekend

The Fourth of July holiday weekend is upon us.  The beach!  Pools!  Fireworks!  Backyard BBQs!  Go out and enjoy, but do me a favor and stay safe.  Lest you need some reminding, here are my top ten tips for a safe summer.

1 — Wear Sunscreen!  At least an SPF 30 if it’s your first time out in the sun.  A lower SPF means you’ll burn quicker, not tan faster.  And don’t forget to reapply, especially after swimming or excessive sweating.  If you’re not sure when it’s time to lather up again, invest in some UVSunSense bracelets.

2– Wear Sunglasses!  Protecting your baby blues from the sun is just as important as protecting your skin.  Some studies suggest prolonged unprotected exposure to harmful UV rays increases your risk of developing macular degeneration.

3–Stay Hydrated!  And no, parking yourself next the keg in the backyard doesn’t count.  Be sure to drink plenty of water.  The hotter it is, the faster you lose liquids.  If you are imbibing, try to alternate every other alcoholic drink with a glass of water.

4–Swim Supervised!  This goes especially if you’re at the beach.  Be sure to only swim in the waters patrolled by lifeguards.  With Hurricane Alex churning out there in the Atlantic, rip currents along the coast are stronger than usual.

5– Leave the Fireworks to Macy’s! Emergency room visits skyrocket during the fourth of July holiday, mostly because of all those backyard fireworks shows.  If you want to keep all your fingers and toes, let the pros handle the fire show.

6–Don’t Drink and Drive! Believe it or not, the Fourth of July is the deadliest holiday weekend for drunk driving.  Yes, even more than the New Year holiday.  So if you’re drinking, please make sure you have a designated driver.  If you’re not drinking, but will be on the road, be alert to the dangerous drivers around you.

7–Don’t Get Sick!  Summer grilling seasoning is high time for food poisoning.  Whether it’s salmonella or E coli or just food that’s been left out in the heat too long, take care to not get sick (or make your guests sick).  Make sure everything’s cook/served/stored at the proper temperature.  That’s unless you don’t want to host the BBQ next year!

8–Shoo Fly!  Bugs.  They’re the bane of outdoor summer fun.  If you want to keep them at bay, skip the scented soaps, perfumes and hairspray.  If your backyard is especially buggy, invest in a sunscreen with bug repellent. 

9–Don’t Forget Fido! Pets, like people, aren’t immune to the hot weather.  They can become dehydrated more quickly than humans, so make sure your pooch has plenty of fresh water available if you’re taking her along to the picnic/BBQ.  Also, make sure she has a shady place to rest.

10–Practice Moderation!  Here it is again, the BuffBroad golden rule!  Whether it’s the sun, or the water or food and especially the alcohol, don’t overdo it.  Too much of something isn’t always a good thing.  But don’t forget to have fun!  Being happy is one thing this buff broad doesn’t think you should moderate!

Happy Fourth!

Photo courtesy of Flikr

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