Your Healthy Family

Jun 4, 2013 12:57 PM by Marissa Torres

Summer heat especially dangerous for children

All of us know that too much direct sun light and a lack of water in the extreme heat can be dangerous, but doctors say infants and toddler are at an even greater risk.

Summer is just around the corner-- and there's nothing more exciting than hitting the pool and being outside.
doctors say you can enjoy the sunshine-- provided you take the necessary precautions.

Dr. Rita Ellsworth, a pediatrician with Southern Colorado Clinic says sunscreen is beneficial, unless your child is 4 months or younger.

"With that age group, you want to make sure that you just put it lightly on the extremities and then wash it off as soon as you get back inside."

Washing not only prevents babies from ingesting the chemicals, it also reduces the risk for rash.

"It's a combination of heat, direct heat to the skin with the chemicals."

Dr. Ellsworth says SPF 30 or higher is best. As for babies too young to wear sun block-- their skin should always be covered.

"Also make sure that they have their head covered, cause they have less hair than adults."

While outside, you should also make sure the kids are getting enough water.

"Their body's surface area is smaller, so they have more fluid to lose in a shorter surface area."

Children quickly lose sweat and moisture through their skin, so doctor ellsworth says to look for the key signs of dehydration. Dry lips and tongue, decreased amount of urine output, kids also get a little grumpy.

Dr. Ellsworth says Southern Colorado puts an increased risk on children because of the high wind and dry hea

 

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