April 23rd is National Picnic Day. It’s a day when families can pack a picnic lunch or dinner and head to a favorite park, beach, or backyard to share a meal. A companion care at home aide could help your loved one prepare for the event. While picnics are a lot of fun, they also carry some risks. Make sure you’re putting safety first.
Check For Recalls and Bring Plenty of Water
Before getting started, make sure the items you’re packing for the picnic haven’t been recalled. Many recent recalls have been for items like picnic coolers, deli meats and cheeses, salad kits, and frozen strawberries.
Your mom needs to stay hydrated. Bring plenty of water for everyone. Depending on the temperature, plan on about eight ounces of water every hour. If it’s hot out, she may need more than that.
Other ways to make sure she stays hydrated is by bringing cubes of watermelon, cantaloupe, and grapes. Fruits and vegetables that have a high water content are ideal. Other options include kiwis, berries, cucumbers, tomatoes, and oranges.
Items Containing Egg, Meat, or Cheese Need to Be On Ice
Any salads, sandwiches, or items that will go onto a grill have to be stored on ice. If you can’t put it in a cooler with ice, don’t bring it.
Non-perishable items like bags of chips, crackers, and fresh fruit can go into another cooler. You’ll want a cooler with ice for beverages, too.
Don’t risk food poisoning. Keep items on ice or don’t bring them. It needs to be that simple. While food poisoning may be uncomfortable for you, it could be deadly for your mom.
Protect Skin From the Sun and Wear Bug Spray
Make sure your mom has sunscreen with her. Apply it around 15 minutes before she goes outside. You want to invest in a broad-spectrum sunscreen to protect against both UVA and UVB rays. An SPF of 35 or higher is best.
Mosquitoes, black flies, deer flies, and ticks are all insects you’ll find when you’re out in a park, beach, or forest area. Bug spray helps deter them. As some insects carry dangerous diseases, it’s important to make sure your mom doesn’t get bitten.
If she’s in areas with ticks, long pants that are tucked into her socks will help. When she comes out of taller grass or shrubs, check her legs for ticks and pull any off before they have a chance to climb to her torso or neck.
Consider Hiring Companion Care at Home Providers
While you’re with your mom for National Picnic Day, you can’t be there the rest of the time. Consider setting up companion care at home services to ensure your mom isn’t alone. Her caregiver can help her cook meals, prepare snacks, and get drinks.
With companion care at home, your mom isn’t alone or lonely. She’s no longer feeling isolated and forced to eat by herself night after night. She’ll have a caregiver with her as much as she wants, and that will make a big difference in her happiness.