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May 30, 2014 06:19 PM

Summer Camp Safety

The end of May signifies the beginning of a summer ritual for many kids: Summer Camp.

But parents should take steps to make sure their kids stay healthy and safe while away from home.

The Stroh triplets and their older brother Tayton love running around and exploring the great outdoors. That's just one of the reasons their parents send them to summer camps.

"With kids now days the obesity rate is skyrocketing with all the food and drinks and everything, so to get them outside and running and active is very important," Nick Stroh said.

But Nick Stroh says he also wants to make sure his kids stay healthy while at camp.

It's counselor training week at YMCA Leif Ericson camp. They learn a lot, including how to make sure kids stay safe. Director of Camping Services, Mike Murphy, says parents should also tell staff if their children have any health concerns.

"It's important to communicate to the individual camp what medications are going to be brought and when they need to be administered," Murphy said.

The medications are usually left with camper health staff.

"So they can make sure the campers are all getting them when they need them and in the right amounts," Murphy said.

But there are some rescue medications, like inhalers or EpiPens that you might want to make sure campers have easier access to.

"Obviously it's important for those campers to have those inhalers with them at all times, so we either keep them with the camper, or their camp counselor will have them with them at all times, so we make sure they are always at the ready," Murphy said.

It's also a good idea for parents to ask if they should send a first aid kit with their child. Here at Leif Ericson they do have first aid kits, and they actually have a defibrillator.

By asking the right questions and bringing the right supplies, Stroh is confident his children will have a positive camp experience and will also learn life skills.

"Hiking, camping, boating, things they might not get from video games or anything like that," Nick said.

You also might want to send sunscreen and bug spray with your kids to camp.

If your child has food allergies, you should check with the camp to find out what food they're serving and what food kids are allowed to bring with them to camp.

  • HealthBeat
  • Children's Health
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