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Preventing Heatstroke

A lot of heat is created by our bodies. Typically, this heat is cooled by the heat radiating through the skin and the sweat produced by the body. However, in high humidity, very hot weather and other adverse weather conditions, there could be a failure in this natural cooling system. When this happens, body heat could get to dangerous levels. This could result in heat-related illnesses like heatstroke, heat exhaustion or heat cramps in both adults and children.

Spending time outside with a child during the hot days of summer is okay, provided that your kid is wearing sunscreen protection with enough SPF. However, but proper clothing, hydration and periods of rest are vital to avoiding heat illnesses.

Before the appearance of heat stroke symptoms, a baby often shows signs of milder heat illnesses like heat exhaustion and heat cramps. This typically happens after a child loses excessive salt and fluids from sweating and becomes dehydrated from playing in the heat.

Heatstroke in Children

Heatstroke in a baby is uncommon but extremely dangerous. Allowing a child or baby to ride in a very hot car, sit in a parked car or be directly exposed to hot weather outside for too long could result in his or her body temperature rising very quickly.

Very young children and babies are unable to express when they are uncomfortable; therefore, you should look for concerning symptoms or unusual behaviors like:

• Rapid breathing

• Lethargy

• Restlessness

• Vomiting

• Irritability

Below are some safety tips on how to prevent heatstroke in children:

There are simply steps parents can take to keep children safe from heatstroke. Engage in outdoor activities when the temperature is cooler like early in the morning or in the evening. When outside, seek shade as best as possible, particularly when taking a water break or making the baby take a rest.

Choose light-colored, loose-fitting and moisture-wicking clothing instead of heavy cotton clothing. Consider dressing your child in sun protective clothing for days when he or she is outside for several hours. Frequently, schedule water breaks to avoid dehydration and cool off.


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