Protecting Your Kids from Fatal Environmental Risks

Protecting Your Kids from Fatal Environmental Risks

Keep pesticides and other toxic chemicals away from children
•    Store food and trash in closed containers to keep pests from coming into your home.
•    Use baits and traps when you can; place baits and traps where kids can't get them.
•    Read product labels and follow directions.
•    Store pesticides and toxic chemicals where kids can't reach them - never put them in other containers that kids can mistake for food or drink.
•    Keep children, toys, and pets away when pesticides are applied; don't let them play in fields, orchards, and gardens after pesticides have been used for at least the time recommended on the pesticide label.
•    Wash fruits and vegetables under running water before eating - peel them before eating, when possible.
Help children breathe easier
•    Don't smoke and don't let others smoke in your home or car.
•    Keep your home as clean as possible. Dust, mold, certain household pests, secondhand smoke, and pet dander can trigger asthma attacks and allergies.
•    Limit outdoor activity on ozone alert days when air pollution is especially harmful.
•    Walk, use bicycles, join or form carpools, and take public transportation.
•    Limit motor vehicle idling.
•    Avoid open burning.
•    Limit outdoor activity on poor air quality days.
Storms and floods
•    Make an evacuation and communication plan in place for the family during floods and storms.
•    If children are exposed to flood waters, watch for diarrhea.
•    Check for local drinking water advisories.
•    Drink bottled water or boil tap water to disinfect it.
•    Check local advisories about recreational activities, such as beach closures.
•    After a major storm, check your child's mental health, school performance, sleeping and eating patterns for signs of change and seek treatment if needed.
Too much heat
•    If you are pregnant try to stay cool, stretch your legs and sip water more often than usual to prevent dehydration.
•    Infants and young children overheat quickly and are less able to adapt to extreme heat.  Offer sips of water often.
•    Dress infants and children is loose, lightweight, light color clothing.
•    Children may not ask for water and may not be aware that they need to cool down.
•    Never leave infants in a parked car.
•    Help children find places to cool off when they are overheated.
•    Ensure that children drink plenty of water before and after athletic events.
•    Monitor children, and even teenagers, for signs of heat-related illness, provide water, and have a plan to combat heat illness.
•    Communities can work together to create cooling centers for children, to issue heat warnings and alerts, and to air condition schools.
•    Seek medical care right away if your child has signs of heat-related illness.
      Stopping mosquito bites
•    Use insect repellents when your children play outdoors.  Always follow the label directions.
•    Wear long sleeves and pants from dusk through dawn when mosquitoes are most active.
•    Install or repair screens on windows and doors.  If you can, use your air conditioning.
•    Help reduce the number of mosquitoes around your home by emptying standing water from containers, flowerpots, gutters, buckets, pool covers, pet dishes, tires, and birdbaths.

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