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How to take care of young children during extreme summer months?

How to take care of young children during extreme summer months?

Whether you spend your time indoors or outdoors, summer is a tricky season for keeping children of all ages safe and comfortable. Babies and young children should be observed carefully during hot weather. They can quickly lose body fluids through sweating and it can lead to dehydration. They need to drink regularly, wear light clothing and should stay cool. Children’s skin is still soft and is moulding with each season change. They need special attention every season. Here are some care tips to keep in your mind to make children feel comfortable and healthy during summer.

Sun Protection:

A baby under 6 months has thin, delicate skin. Try to keep him out of direct sunlight. But for times when that’s impractical (such as taking a dip in the water with Mom or Dad), make sure he’s wearing sunscreen.

Young children and babies should also be kept out of the sun as much as possible, particularly in the summer and between 11am and 3pm, when the sun is at its strongest. If you go out when it’s hot, attach a parasol or sunshade to your baby’s stroller to keep them out of direct sunlight.

Make sure your child wears a sunhat with a wide ridge or a long flap at the back to protect their head and neck from the sun.

Dehydration

It is important for Babies and young to offer drinks or breastfeeds frequently.

Always use boiled or filtered water for your baby. As hot water kills bacteria present in the water.

Babies over six months of age can be offered small amounts of cooled boiled water, after or between milk feeds.

Offer young children water as their main drink throughout the day. Fruit juice, fruit-based drinks and carbonated drinks are not recommended as they can cause indirect dehydration.

Keeping Children Cool:

Pure cotton clothes are more absorbent than clothes made of synthetic fibres such as nylon, polyester or rayon for example. As a result, when your baby sweats, cotton clothes absorb the moisture and allow it to dry whereas clothes made of synthetic fibres don’t. Additionally, try to use light colour clothes as much as possible.

A hat will also help keep your baby cool when out in the sun. Choose one with a wide rim so that it protects his head, face and neck from the sun.

For sleeping, choose the coolest basement in the house. Keep the heat out by closing the curtains and make sure fresh air can circulate around the bassinette or cot (no liners or padding). Don’t leave babies asleep in a pram as they can become very hot.

If possible, keep your children inside, particularly during the hottest parts of the day, generally between 11am and 3pm. Plan your activities for early morning, late afternoon or evenings.

Keep nightwear and bedclothes to a minimum. Put your baby in single nappy and tight-fitted sheets. Avoid baby to push sheets at night.

Away From Bugs:

Mosquito or Bug bites are common in the summer. Use the right kind of bug spray for your babies to keep mosquitoes away.

Natural ingredient bug sprays are available in the market. Make sure that you use them.

Air coolers, if used, should be regularly cleaned. Change cooler water to prevent mosquitoes or other insects breeding.

Some ideas about food in hot weather:

Keep in mind that some prescribed medications can increase the risk of heat-related illness. Some medications are less effective and more toxic when exposed to and stored in high temperatures. Store medications below 25°C or in the fridge if indicated. Please see the labels or ask your local pharmacist.

Other tips for hot weather:

A refreshing idea for young children is to freeze fruit pieces (orange quarters, watermelon).

Give more frequent but smaller meals, offer chilled food items and minimise hot food

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