Tips for summer safety
Summer is filled with plenty of outdoor activities and fun in the sun. Keep yourself and your family safe and healthy during the summer months with a few helpful precautions:
- Hydrate. Drink lots of water, even if you don’t feel thirsty. Texas’ soaring temperatures cause you to sweat more than usual. Dehydration can lead to problems ranging from headaches to life-threatening illnesses such as heat stroke.
- Stay safe in the sun. The sun’s rays are strongest between 10 a.m. and 2 p.m., so limit your sun exposure during these peak hours and protect your skin with a broad spectrum SPF of 30 or higher. Seek out shade and keep covered with long sleeves and pants when possible, and wear a hat and sunglasses.
- Practice safe food handling. Food poisoning peaks in the summer months when warmer temperatures provide a breeding ground for germs. Take extra precautions like washing hands and food prep surfaces after they have touched raw meat. Use a food thermometer to ensure cooked meats reach a safe internal temperature.
Another tip for outdoor enthusiasts: prevent bug bites. Use insect repellant that contains at least 20% DEET to avoid the spread of diseases such as Zika and Lyme disease. Avoid wearing perfume and using scented soaps, as sweet scents can attract some insects.
Where to go, who to see
If you do require medical attention, keep your options for care in mind to save time and money. Not every situation requires an expensive visit to the ER. Learn more about your options for care or call a BCBSTX Personal Health Assistant at (800) 252-8039 (TTY: 711), Monday-Friday 7 a.m.–7 p.m. or Saturday 7 a.m.–3 p.m. CT.