A weekly column by Dr Miles Langdon of South Lincolnshire Clinical Commissioning Group
As kids across the country eagerly anticipate that final school bell signalling the official start of summer, parents grow anxious at the prospect of entertaining and funding six weeks’ worth of fun-filled family time.
Mums and dads across Lincolnshire will be pleased to hear there are numerous cost-effective summer solutions right at their fingertips, to keep the little ones busy indoors or out.
First, visit the Change4Life website: www.nhs.uk/Change4Life/Pages/local-change-for-life-activities.aspx, enter your postcode, select whether it’s an indoor or outdoor activity you’d like and the number of children involved, and a range of local activities will appear.
Warm summer days provide the perfect opportunity to get out and about more, improving your physical and mental wellbeing.
Make the most of our picturesque countryside and spend the afternoon exploring the Lincolnshire Wolds or our stunning coastline.
Visit www.walkinginlincs.co.uk to download an explorer map, pack a picnic, remembering your five-a-day and healthy, energy-boosting snacks, and make a day of it.
The Change4Life website has some great recipes for lunchboxes and picnics: www.nhs.uk/Change4Life/Pages/healthy-lunchbox-picnic.aspx
Your local council will also be organising sports clubs, theatre groups and various other events as part of a ‘Summer What’s On Guide’, which will be available online in the coming weeks, so keep an eye on their website for swimming offers and other local attraction discounts that the council often promote during the holiday period.
Don’t forget, the sun is at its strongest between 11am and 3pm, so if your child is outdoors during this time, make sure they are covered in a high factor sun cream containing UVA and UVB protection, (even in overcast conditions) and reapply regularly throughout the day – use a waterproof lotion if you are visiting an outdoor swimming pool.
Try to encourage them to wear a hat and keep hydrated – particularly if they are taking part in sporting activities.
The Family Information Service can also help families who need formal childcare over the summer or other children’s services and activities.
For further details and advice, contact the Family Information Service on Freephone 0800 195 1635, Monday to Friday, 8am to 6pm, or via email at firstname.lastname@example.org