Children's Hospital Colorado

Colorado Springs YMCA Health Tips

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Children’s Colorado puts a variety of parent resources and health tips from our experts right at your fingertips, so you can provide your family with the best possible care. 

Children's Colorado has teamed up with the YMCA to provide you with the top safety tips to keep your active child safe during the summer months. 

  1. Do you know the difference between heat exhaustion and heatstroke? Both are caused by exercising or playing in a hot, humid environment where the body becomes dehydrated, but they have different symptoms. If your child shows signs of either of these conditions, seek medical attention immediately.


A group of four kids lay on a hammock outside.
Safety first! Keep kids safe throughout the summer.

2.    Do you know what to look for when purchasing a sunscreen to protect your kids this summer? Look for greater than or equal to SPF 30 and products that are broad spectrum, which means they protect against both UVA and UVB rays, and reapply often! See guidelines to keep kids safe under the sun. 

3.    Do you know the signs of a concussion can include vomiting or extreme sleepiness, in addition to a headache or trouble walking and talking? Children’s Colorado put together a helpful and informative video about what it’s like to get a concussion and how to identify the signs.

4.    It can be difficult to get kids to drink water, but it is especially important if they are active – our bodies lose water through breathing, sweating and digestion. 11 ways to get your child to drink more water.

5.    Properly fitted helmets should be worn for all wheeled sports activities:

  • The helmet should sit on top of the head in a level position.
  • The helmet should not rock forward, backward or side to side.
  • The rim should be one to two finger-widths above the eyebrows.
  • The straps of the helmet should form a “V” under each ear and the fastened buckle should be snug under the chin.

6.  Make exercise a focus of family time and think about how you can incorporate regular physical activity into your daily life as a family. Here are some tips from the experts at Children’s Colorado:

  • Turn off the TV and kick a soccer ball around the yard for 30 minutes.
  • Set up an obstacle course in your yard or neighborhood park.
  • If you do watch TV, do jumping jacks, push up or sit-ups during commercial breaks. 

Get additional tips for families to make time for physical play.

7.    Good nutrition is important for a healthy life. Is your child eating at least 2 fruits and 2 vegetables a day? If you have a picky eater, did you know it can take up to 14 times to change your palate? So keep trying! See answers to parents' top questions about nutrition.

8.    Parenting is rewarding, fulfilling and challenging... but it doesn't have to be a battle. Having positive strategies to deal with tantrums, meltdowns and other undesirable behavior can help. Treating discipline as education, being consistent and rewarding good behavior helps children learn appropriate behaviors and can have lasting benefits. Learn more about Positive Parenting.

9.    Why are family meals so important? Family meals are associated with healthier food choices; fewer disordered eating behaviors, less substance abuse, and better psychosocial well-being among adolescents. Additional tips for preparing family meals. 

A boy and girl eat bananas and hold a green apple.
Have a picky eater? Did you know it can take 14 times to change a palate? 

10.  Tips for traveling with kids from the experts at Children’s Colorado:

  • Leave early and allow extra time. Pack your patience!
  • ​Take along healthy snacks (like apple slices, whole grain crackers, pretzels, raisins, carrots, string cheese and granola bars) and water or empty water bottle for refills.
  • Let your children pack their own bag of travel games or quiet toys like crayons, books or coloring books, stickers or art supplies that don’t have too many pieces. 
  • Play games as a family like counting all the red cars on road trips, finding license plates from other states, or playing “I spy".
  • Make sure everyone has their seat belt fastened while driving or riding in a motor vehicle, and always buckle your child in an appropriate car or booster seat. 

See how to keep your toddler entertained while on the road.

11.  Install smoke and carbon monoxide alarms on every level of your home, especially near sleeping areas. Test alarms every month, and replace their batteries every six months. Read more on the dangers of Carbon Monoxide Poisoning for children.

12.  Children act fast…so do poisons! Many household products can be dangerous if your child ingests them, including cosmetics, cleansers, personal care products, plants, pesticides, art supplies, alcohol and toys. Because kids have faster metabolisms than adults, anything they ingest will be absorbed into the bloodstream very quickly. See more on Poison Prevention Information.

13.  When things go bump in the night, there’s an after hours urgent care for kids only at Briargate. Learn more about Briargate's after hours urgent care

14.  Wouldn’t it be great if you could talk to a nurse from the comfort of your home anytime you had a health questions about your child or newborn? When you call Children’s Colorado Parent Smart HealthLine at 1-855-KID-INFO, you can receive free health care advice from registered pediatric nurses.

15.  No one knows your kids like you do, but sometimes you need a quick tip, a new idea and maybe a little support to get past the fussing and on to the laughing, growing, learning and living. That's where the experts at Children's Colorado can help with our free parenting workshops. Find one near you.