Tips for a Safe, Healthy Summer


Summer is the perfect time to enjoy the sun, outdoor dining, and water activities. Although fun, these summer activities can pose some risks to your health.

In the event you need to see a medical professional, know your TRICARE benefit and the different types of covered services available to you and your family, including preventive care, urgent care, and emergency care. If you’re not sure if you need medical attention, remember the Military Health System Nurse Advice Line is free and available 24/7.

Keep in mind the following tips so you and your family stay safe and healthy this summer:

  1. Protect Skin from Sun Exposure: When you and your family are having fun outdoors, use these tips to stay safe in the sun:
    • Use sunscreen with SPF 15 or higher.
    • Wear clothing that covers your skin.
    • Avoid direct sunlight by sitting in the shade or using a beach umbrella.
    • Wear a hat to protect your face, head, ears, and neck.
    • Wear sunglasses that block ultraviolet rays.

    If you’re at a higher risk of developing skin cancer, get checked out. TRICARE covers skin cancer exams for individuals with a family or personal history of skin cancer, increased occupational or recreational exposure to sunlight, or clinical evidence of precursor lesions.

  2. Prep, Cook, and Store Food Properly: When hosting outdoor summer gatherings, food safety is key, especially since keeping food cool can be a challenge. Check out these tips to reduce your chances of food poisoning from summer foods:
    • Wash your hands, kitchen surfaces, cookware and utensils thoroughly before you prepare food.
    • Separate your foods to avoid cross-contamination.
    • Cook your meats, whether using the oven or grill, until they’re the correct internal temperature.
    • Chill food within two hours (within one hour if hotter than 90 F) and don’t leave food in the heat or sitting at room temperature for a long time.
  3. Make Smart Decisions in or near Water: If engaging in water fun, here are a few safety tips to protect yourself and loved ones while you’re in or near water:
    • Know how to swim and any limitations in your swimming ability.
    • Always supervise kids when around water.
    • Bring a friend.
    • Wear a lifejacket.
    • Swim in supervised (lifeguarded) areas.
    • Drink responsibly and avoid alcohol during water activities.

To ensure this summer is filled with good memories, make safety a priority at all times.

Last Updated 1/24/2019