Health Tips for a Terrific Fourth of July

​​Eating yummy food, playing yard games, enjoying time in the water - holiday weekends are often filled with loads of exciting activities with your loved ones! While you get ready to kick off the Fourth of July holiday weekend, keep in mind some of these important tips to make sure you have a healthy, safe, and happy holiday. 

Sun Protection: Not only is it important to apply a quality sunscreen, but it’s equally as important to reapply often and make sure you’re applying enough. Choose a broad-spectrum (UVA/UVB) sunscreen with an SPF of at least 30 for adults and at least SPF 50 for children. Reapply every two hours, regardless of how sunny or cloudy it is. Our dermatologists also recommend using mineral sunscreen. Look for mineral sunscreens that contain zinc oxide and titanium oxide, which are naturally occurring minerals. These sunscreens are better for sensitive skin, creating a stronger barrier from UV rays and not harming the environment. It’s also a good idea to incorporate light, long-sleeve clothing and broad-brimmed hats into your wardrobe, especially for young children. Clothing barriers, umbrellas and UV-blocking sunglasses are essential when outside. 

Hydration: As the summer heat increases, so does your risk of heat exhaustion and heatstroke. Beat the heat by staying inside when the sun is at its peak— typically from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. If your body has yet to acclimate to the heat, be sure to take breaks and not push yourself too hard. It’s difficult to remember to stay hydrated when you’re playing in the water, or the sky is a little cloudy. But adults should aim to drink at least 100 ounces of water a day, and children should aim to drink 40 ounces of water a day. Avoid drinks with alcohol or caffeine, as they can have dehydrating effects.

Firework Safety: Fireworks can be really fun! But they also pose additional risks, especially to young children. Young kiddos should never be around fireworks without adult supervision. Tiny tots and infants should also wear ear and eye protection. While the noise from fireworks may not bother adults, they could potentially damage a child’s hearing. Sparklers are popular among kids, but they can also quickly ignite clothing and cause burns. We suggest glowsticks, confetti and silly string as great alternatives for children.

Food Safety: Backyard cookouts and picnics are the most delicious parts of summer. Making sure they stay safe and tasty is easy with a few simple food safety tips. Establish a safe zone around the grill by placing it in a well-ventilated open area that’s free of dry leaves and brush. When grilling, avoid charring or burning meat as this creates carcinogens that are harmful to your health. Make sure everyone’s favorite potato and pasta salads, or anything containing mayonnaise, stays cool and refrigerated. Finally, keep food covered to prevent curious insects from coming around to take a bite of the food and of you.

At Harbin Clinic, we hope that our patients and communities have a wonderful holiday weekend full of celebration and happy memories. Thank you for allowing us to care completely for you!