Last Days of School: Red Cross Summer Safety

Summer Safety
Red Cross has you covered with outdoor safety tips for summer adventures.

Before your kids toss aside their backpack and head outside to play, take a minute to brush up on your first aid knowledge. Tips, lists and mobile apps from the American Red Cross have you covered from anything you might encounter outside, from thunderstorm preparedness to bee stings and everything in between.

Everyone will most likely enjoy outdoor activities at some point this spring. Make sure you’re ready to handle most minor accidents with the tips below.

INSECT STINGS AND BITES:

  • A person who has been bitten or stung will feel pain. Check for a bite mark or stinger and any swelling and/or bleeding.
  • Remove the stinger by scraping it away with a flat surface, such as a credit card.
  • Otherwise, carefully remove it with tweezers, being sure to grab the base of the stinger to avoid squeezing the venom sac.
  • Wash wound with soap and water, cover with a dressing, then apply ice or a cold pack.
  • Call 9-1-1 or the local emergency number of the person seems to be having an allergic or anaphylaxic reaction.
  • CUTS, SCRAPES, STRAINS AND SPRAINS:

  • For minor cuts and grazes, you can wash the wound to remove any dirt. Don’t wash a wound that is bleeding heavily. If you put a heavily bleeding wound under a tap, you will wash away all the clotting agents and make it bleed more.
  • Put pressure on the wound with whatever is available to stop or slow down the flow of blood.
  • If the bleeding is severe, call 9-1-1 as soon as possible, or get someone else to do it.
  • Keep pressure on the wound until help arrives.
  • If there’s an embedded object in the wound, don’t remove it. It’s helping plug the hole and stop the blood flow. Instead, simply apply pressure around the object. Removing the object from the wound can make the bleeding much worse.
  • A general care tip for injuries to the muscles, bones and joints is RICE: Rest, Immobilize, Cold, Elevate.
  • When applying an ice pack, make sure the ice doesn’t stay in direct content with skin. Wrap the ice or other item, such as a pack of frozen vegetables, in a dishtowel. Leave on for no longer than 20 minutes.
  • BURNS: End of school celebrations might include dinner on the grill or s’mores over a campfire. Whatever the case, the Red Cross has a few important tips to remember if you get too close to the flame.

  • Cool the burn under cool running water for at least 10 minutes.
  • If the burn requires further medical care, loosely cover it with a clean dressing.
  • If necessary, call 9-1-1 or get someone else to do it.
  • Don’t put butter or cream on a burn.
  • Remove any clothing or jewelry near the burned area, but don’t try to remove anything that’s stuck to the burn.
  • For additional details and many other first aid emergencies, you can download and refer to the Red Cross First Aid App.

    About the American Red Cross:
    The American Red Cross shelters, feeds and provides emotional support to victims of disasters; supplies about 40 percent of the nation's blood; teaches skills that save lives; provides international humanitarian aid; and supports military members and their families. The Red Cross is a not-for-profit organization that depends on volunteers and the generosity of the American public to perform its mission. For more information, please visit redcross.org or visit us on Twitter at @RedCross.

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