By JB Warton, DO – Pediatrics
One of the easiest ways to get exercise with kids in Central Oregon is to go on a family hike. When preparing for the hike, make sure to take food and at least one bottle of water for each person. If at all possible, have the kids wear long sleeves and pants in breathable materials, especially if you are going to be in wooded areas where ticks can hide.
Apply sunscreen at least 30 minutes prior to exposure. If you are going on a long or secluded hike, bring a first aid kit and extra supplies.
Make sure that the kids have supportive shoes or hiking boots. Flip flops and non-supportive sandals are not appropriate footwear for kids on hikes.
Take plenty of breaks, especially with young children as they tend to tire more easily.
Be careful around any water or other hazards on the trail and supervise the kids closely. If there are going to be a lot of bugs, it is reasonable to use insect repellent though not in infants younger than two months of age.
It is also a good idea to check everyone for ticks when you return home, especially if you hiked in wooded or brush filled areas.