From the Parish Nurse

Article from the Parish Nurse

Dear Church Family,

     As I write this, it has not been looking much like summer.  I have been toying with the idea of building an ark and packing warm clothes to wear when I launch it. Hopefully it will stop raining and warm up a little bit!  Just in case it does warm up and that big yellow ball in the sky suddenly appears again, I thought we should go through some summer safety ideas.

     We all know we should use sunscreen if we are out in the sun with uncovered skin for more than a few minutes.  The American Academy of Dermatology recommends a sunscreen containing:  an SPF rating of 30 or higher, broad spectrum (which covers both UVA and UVB rays), and water resistance (which means it should protect wet skin for at least 40 minutes before you need to reapply).  Ingredients the FDA recognizes as safe and effective are titanium dioxide and zinc oxide.  These are mineral sunscreens that sit on the surface of the skin and reflect the sun.  Chemical sunscreens absorb the sun’s rays.  These contain a number of other chemicals which the FDA has not finished researching.  Present data indicates that they are safe and that we should continue to use them. 

     Heat is another issue.  We generally have people end up hospitalized due to dehydration, heat stroke or heat exhaustion.  Always be sure to stay well hydrated when it is hot out.  Dehydration happens without you realizing it.  It is very important for us to drink lots of water when it is hot out.  Do not leave children, pets, or older adults alone in a car or outside in the heat.  Make sure your pets have plenty of cool water and shade if outside.  Check on older friends.

     We all enjoy picnics during the summer.  No one enjoys food poisoning.  Just be careful how things are cooked, kept cold or hot, and what is kept and thrown out at the end.  The FDA recommends cold food should be kept at 40 degrees till served and should not sit out more than 2 hrs. (1 hr. if the outside temp. is over 90 degrees).  Likewise, hot foods should be kept at 140 degrees and not left out for serving beyond 2 hrs. or 1 hr. if over 90 degrees outside.  When grilling, the FDA suggests burgers should reach a temp. of 160, chicken and turkey 165, steaks 145 (with a 3 minute rest time), and sausage 160.  Approximately 1 in 6 Americans get food poisoning each year.  Don’t be one of them!  Be careful what you eat.  If food doesn’t seem cold enough or taste quite right, DON’T EAT IT!!!

     Have a safe and healthy summer!!!

 God Bless!!!    Beth