Many Iowa teens will be dashing off to warmer weather locales during the upcoming Spring Break weeks and some might be tempted to go a little wild when they hit the beach towns. Dr. David Braun, director of the University of Iowa’s Student Health Service, says he’s advising students to have fun but remember to stay safe.
Dr. Braun says: "If they’re going to be going out with a group of friends, have somebody that knows where they’re at at all times. This is important whether they’re going to be drinking or whether they’re going to be at a place that they’re not sure about for transportation and things like this." Some students seem to forget they’ve been inside for several wintery months and have no base tan at all.
Braun says if you don’t wear a strong sunscreen, you’ll get badly burned — whether you’re at the beach or on the slopes. "Most people haven’t been out in the sun lately and it might be something that they forget about," Braun says.
"Even if you’re out skiing, there’s still exposure to ultraviolet radiation that could result in damage to your skin, so it’s good to be proactive."
For students who are working on service projects during the week, perhaps on flooded homes, he recommends they look into getting a tetanus booster. While Spring Break is a chance for students to let off some steam, Braun says kids need to call on their common sense when it comes to partying and hooking up with new friends.
"We recommend that students use condoms to prevent sexually transmitted infections," Braun says. "We also recommend that students monitor their drinking and limit it to four or five drinks a night and we also remind students that a student who is intoxicated cannot give consent for sexual activity."
The student health clinic in Iowa City is often swamped with students the week following spring break as young people request S-T-D tests.