Today I write to you from the beautiful Oregon Coast. We came out here yesterday to celebrate our daughter Delilah’s 8th Birthday and man oh man, what a weekend to be on the beach. The weather was exceptional yesterday and it truly feels like this is our summer kick-off.
Early this morning, I knew I wanted to blog something about being at the beach, but I wasn’t exactly sure what I wanted to write about. I took a walk along the beach before everyone woke up and as I strolled back to our hotel, I saw an older couple applying sunscreen to each other.
Mind you, it was barely 7am and the sun wasn’t even shining much yet, but this wise couple was preparing for a day in the sun. That’s when I realized that beach safety is the perfect topic to write about on this first Sunday of summer.
Probably the most important thing you can do to be safe at the beach is apply sunscreen to yourself and your loved ones. Sunburns go hand in hand with the beach, but they don’t have to.
Protect your skin with sunscreen of high protection factor and be aware of how long you are roasting yourself in the sun. Your skin can begin to burn in a matter of minutes, so it’s crucial that you keep track of how long you are protected with your sunscreen and stay on top of reapplying it when you need to.
If you are planning to go into the water, make sure you get waterproof sunscreen that won’t wash off when the first wave hits you.
It’s also important that you and your family members have a buddy system in place if you are venturing into the water. You always want to make sure that there is another set of eyes watching over you.
Speaking of another set of eyes watching over you, how bout our good ol friendly pal, the lifeguard? Find out where the nearest lifeguard station is and before the day gets going, have a safety talk with the people you are with. Most beach drownings occur at unguarded areas so choose to enter the water in an area that the lifeguard can see.
Learn about rip currents before you go to the beach and know what to do should you get caught in one. Rip currents usually form near a shallow point in the water, such as a sandbar, or close to jetties and piers and can happen at any beach with breaking waves.
The most important thing to do if you get caught in a rip current is to not fight the current. Try to swim parallel to the shore and then swim back to land at an angle.
Preparedness and awareness are the key ingredients to maintaining beach safety. Most of this is common sense, but we need to keep safety on our minds when we are enjoying the summer sun. Spread the word and be safe this summer at the beach.