How can I keep myself safe in the sun, at the pool or on the beach over the holidays?

Summer holidays are the best time of year for many people. No school, sunny days, relaxing at the pool or partying on the beach… sounds perfect. It's great to chill and let go of your stress, but there are still things to be aware of, to make sure you and your loved ones are safe. When you're out in the sun, at the pool or on the beach:

Stay hydrated. Drink lots of water and other non-alcoholic drinks. This is important especially if you're playing sport – the more active you are, the more water you need.

Wear sunscreen. It's such an easy thing to do, and it can make such a difference! As soon as you step into the sun, you are at risk of sunburn (which can lead to worse things like skin cancer). Play it safe and protect yourself with lots of sunscreen.

Don't swim alone. Unless you’re a really strong swimmer, make sure a friend or family member who can swim joins you. And do the same for others – don't let a younger family member swim alone.

Swim safely. If you're swimming in the sea, stick to areas that are marked as safe for swimming; always obey the life guards – they are there to protect you and your friends. And never swim anywhere during a thunderstorm – you risk getting struck by lightning.

Wear sunglasses. Not just to look good! Sunglasses with UVA and UVB protection (check the label) help to protect your eyes.

Know the warning signs for heatstroke. Watch out for heatstroke and dehydration. Staying out in the sun too long can have serious effects. If you feel dizzy, faint, nauseous or have a headache, get out of the sun and get cool right away. Drink cold water and rest. If you don't feel better soon, call a doctor or a nurse.

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