Summer may feel a bit different this year amid the current COVID-19 restrictions. But there are many things we can still do with our families to have a safe, active and fun summer.
Pediatrician Dr. Mary Jane Pennington, CEO of Granger Clinic, says it's important for kids to be active this summer - while staying safe. "Kids need to run, they need to play. They need to do stuff so that they keep growing and developing and stay healthy."
Due to fears of COVID-19, many parents may be hesitant to have their children participate in their typical summer activities. But, as Dr. Pennington reminds us, even though we can't make things 100 percent safe, there are simple things we can all do to help our families stay healthy and happy, while still having a great summer.
One of the most important things families can do includes wearing a mask when you can't keep physically distant from others.
"As we learn more about COVID, what we're figuring out is that wearing masks actually does a pretty good job of protecting the wearer and those around them from sharing COVID," Pennington said.
Another important step? Try to avoid large gatherings indoors.
"Some of the riskiest settings seem to be large groups of people together inside in an enclosed setting for a prolonged period, especially if there’s yelling, or cheering or singing," Pennington said.
But there are still a lot of safe, family friendly activities we can do right now.
"We’re lucky that we live in Utah, and here in Summer we have a lot of opportunities to be outside, which seems to be significantly less risky in picking up COVID."
Examples of safe outdoor activities include:
As for the pool? Dr. Pennington said yes. "We know COVID is not waterborne. We know it doesn’t live in water, so water itself is not a problem, and most of the kids are really moving around quite a bit so they’re having very brief interactions."
The biggest risk at the pool, said Dr. Pennington, is for those sitting around it. She says, if you are going to lounge by the pool this summer, it's important to remember the simple, safe things you can do to stay safe including, "Wearing a mask, staying physically distant, washing your hands, using lots of hand sanitizer, those simple things we’ve been talking about for months.
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