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Q: How can I have a safe spring when outdoors?

Posted April 15, 2015 in Advice Column, Ankeny


Apply broad spectrum (UVA and UVB) sunscreen with at least SPF 1515-30 minutes prior to heading outside, and reapply every 2 hours or after any water activity, including sweating.  Avoid sunscreens containing oxybenzone. Babies younger than 6 months shouldn’t be exposed to direct sunlight.


Insect Repellent

The most effective repellents contain between 10-30% DEET.  Apply just enough to cover clothing and exposed skin, and reapply as directed on the label. Wash skin with soap and water once inside. Avoid use of insect repellents on babies younger than 2 months.


It’s important that children (and adults) always wear helmets anytime they are on a bike, scooter, etc. to protect from traumatic brain injury.  Consider other protective gear as well – knee pads, elbow pads, etc.


With toddlers, bumps, bruises and falls are part of life. Signs your child may have a more significant injury: loss of consciousness, unable to bear weight on or move an extremity, deformity or significant bleeding.


Children should remain hydrated. Though it’s okay for the occasional juice/sports drink, remember these contain lots of extra sugar. The color of the urine indicates dehydration – if it is yellow, you need to drink more.

Contact your child’s provider if you have questions about how to safely enjoy your spring.  Remember to schedule your child’s school/sports physical, as appointments fill quickly!


Information provided by Dr. Douglas Layton, D.O., 2515 S.W. State St., Ankeny, 515-964-6999.


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