Going to the beach is one of the best experiences in summer. Splashing into the waves, playing with friends and family members, is what many would imagine on the way. But even just the sight of the water from your reclining seats and cocktail drink is already a refreshing experience. But amid all the fun and enjoyment, there are dangers that lie ahead to the uninformed and unprepared.
What must we bear in mind when the beach is part of our holiday escapade?
1. Learn how to swim
Learning how to swim can be a life saving effort whether for parents bringing their children or friends accompanying unskilled revelers. Formal swimming lessons reduce the risk of drowning by as much as 88 percent among children between ages one and four, who are at greatest risk of drowning. But even when we or our kids know how to swim, it’s best to be vigilant and supervise possible access to prohibited areas.
2. Do not rely on arm floats
Inflatable arm devices aimed at keeping children afloat do not guarantee to keep small heads above water. Therefore, safety of children should not be relied on such devices. This means keep an eye on children at all times, even if they are confined on shallow beach waters or pools. Other forms of accidents can happen: children can tumble or slip and that could cause serious injuries.
Do not forget to apply sun cream. Exposure to sun for extended period of time can be hazardous to your skin. It is advisable to re-apply sun block cream throughout your stay under the sun especially after taking a dip in the pool or swimming in the beach, which removes your skin protection cream.
4. Learn Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation (CPR)
The first moments of an accident can be a matter of life and death. So knowing CPR while waiting for paramedics/lifeguards to arrive is an invaluable skill that potentially saves the life of someone you may know.
5. Know where to dive
Never dive anywhere without knowing what is underwater and how deep it is. Stay away from rocks and jetties if you wish to insist on showing off your diving skills.
6. Know the best times to take kids under the sun
Early morning and late afternoon, as the sun’s intensity is not at its peak, is the best time to take kids into the water. Otherwise, searing sun makes them (and adults) cranky, spoiling your entire vacation. At these high-risk hours, think of other indoor activities such as feasting on buffet, playing family games or a short nap.
7. Do not swim to soon after meals
Doing so can cause stomach cramps. When consuming alcohol, make sure you don’t hit the beach. Instead stay at safe areas — away from the water. Barriers are created for a purpose. Currents may change at an instant and could easily sweep away even the most experienced swimmers. This advise also applies to boating, or water skiing.
8. Follow beach warning signs
They are in place for a reason. If the strong current warning is currently enforced, never attempt to defy the order. In case there are sharks in sight, an appropriate warning shall be made for the security of everyone. If water is deemed to dirty and may cause skin infection or allergy, authorities will also notify everyone.
9. Drink plenty of fluids
Exposed to the sun for a long period can easily dehydrate our bodies. Water and fruit juices help us rehydrate and restore the ideal ratio of fluid in our body. Take note that alcohol does not count this time.
10. Swim near presence of life guards
It feels reassuring that if something goes wrong, a lifeguard is among the first to rescue you into safety.
11. Use appropriate footwear.
Even if sand in our flip flops often drive us to simply walk barefoot in the beach, extremely hot weather could burn your feet. Not only that, broken glass, sharp rocks or shells in the shoreline could easily make your feet sore.
12. Keep valuables safe
Always have your cameras, diving equipment and other belongings stored in a safe place or within your eyesight. Losing a camera not only deprives you from taking photos of the holiday, but also prompts you to get a new one for your next trip photos.
13. Relax while sunbathing but do not stay long
If you prefer to go sunbathing instead of dipping into the pool, ensure that you are not exposed under the sun for long, even when you have sunblock.
14. Be a careful swimmer.
Get to know the terrain underwater before making a plunge without prior knowledge. That said, always enter water feet first.
15. If all else fails, there’s your travel insurance
When you figure in an accident, lost your belongings or other misfortunes, hopefully your travel insurance coverage will address these misfortunes.