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The summer is a time of joy for children and adults alike. While it may not be apparent that dangers lurk at every corner, there are several things that you need to consider before sending your child/children outdoors alone or unattended.

OVEREXPOSURE

While the warm sunshine tends to draw children out, enticing them to play, it can also be a danger to children. Overexposure to UV rays can be harmful in more ways than one. Studies link overexposure to harmful UV rays to cancer and skin diseases. Also, your child can get severe sunburn. While that seems harmless enough, it is quite the opposite. Sunburn can become harmful and you should always take precautions against it. Always make sure your child is wearing proper sunscreen before going outside to play, whether they'll be outside four minutes or four hours. As well, you should reapply sunscreen from time to time, especially if you will be outside for an extended period of time.

DROWNING

Drowning is an evident fear,not just for children, but for adults as well. You can drown in a teaspoon of water just as easily as ten feet. ALWAYS make sure your child is watched by an adult if they are in or around a pool or body of water. NEVER let your child play in or around water unattended. Also, even if your child is a strong swimmer, even the strongest of swimmers get cramps in their legs or arms from time to time, making swimming impossible. When allowing your child to play, watch them every minute. The two minutes it takes you to read an article can be the two minutes it takes your child to drown. Also, when swimming in natural bodies of water, such as ponds, rivers or creeks, always be aware of the undercurrent. In places, though it may not seem it, it can be strong and prove to much for small children.

ANIMALS

While bear attacks are not common anymore, there are still threats from other wild animals, such as snakes or wild animals that live in your area. In mountainous regions, attacks from mountain lions are not uncommon and snakes are a constant threat in most regions. Always make sure that you carry a snake-bite kit with you and make sure you never allow your child to play in dense shrubbery unattended. Always check the area before allowing your child to play. If visiting a different region, always check to see what animals live around or if any recent attacks have been reported. Always teach your child what to do in times of crisis, so that they may be able to save their lives or the lives or someone else.

FIRST AID

Knowing first aid is important, even if you do not have a child in the house. Take a course on CPR if available, to be prepared for any occasion that might arise. Also, it is a good idea to pack a first aid kit with you wherever you go. Leaving one in your car or bag is a good idea, as well. It is better to be safe than sorry.