(WXYZ) — It’s winter break, a time when many metro Detroit students and their families are outside enjoying winter activities.
Unfortunately, winter break also goes hand-in-hand with wintertime injuries.
As a parent of four children, I know that wintertime fun can also lead to wintertime injuries. It’s very common at this time of year to see knee, wrist and hand injuries along with concussions.
Many of these happen when a child is skiing or snowboarding, but sledding and ice skating can also lead to accidents and injuries. Which is why it’s important that parents take steps to protect your kids.
So here’s my advice:
- Make sure your children wear helmets to protect their heads. And not bicycle helmets, but rather a helmet that’s approved for skiing or snowboarding.
- If your child is snowboarding, make them wear gloves with built-in wrist guards. These will help protect the wrists.
- Consider lessons from qualified instructors. They can help children learn to properly ski, snowboard or skate safely.
- And lastly, make sure equipment worn fits properly and is not too big or tight.
Now, it’s really important that you keep an eye on your kids. Any parent knows that children don’t always make the best decisions. And injuries can happen very quickly.
So if you’re sledding, it’s feet first or sitting up. If you’re skating, skate in the same direction as others. And always stay away from ponds, lakes or trees.
Also, when you’re outdoors, wear thin layers along with a hat, scarf, and gloves. That way if your child gets hot it’s easy to take a layer off.
And if you have little ones or infants like I do, dress them in one more layer than what you yourself are wearing. Because babies don’t have the same tolerance to winter weather as we do, so they’ll get cold sooner. Which is why it’s important to take breaks often and head indoors to warm up.
That will also keep frostbite or hypothermia at bay.