Many children love to get out and enjoy their summer breaks from school. They have free time to play outside, explore the world and be with their friends. However, the summer heat might prove to be too much for them. Some children, like some adults, are not very adept at monitoring themselves for signs of thirst, overheating or even dehydration. Keeping your kids cool this summer is vital to their health, so follow these tips to help them safely enjoy their break.
- Have a mandatory “inside only” period during the hottest part of the day. Take the couple of hours after lunchtime to cool off inside. You and your child can play games, watch a movie, or plan the fun activities that await later in the evening.
- Provide shady areas for playtime. Trees, pop-up tents and even the porch can all be good places for your child to have some fun.
- Provide water and sports drinks. Encourage your child to drink whenever he’s thirsty. He shouldn’t gulp down an entire bottle at once, though, as this can cause cramps. You can put an ice chest full of drinks on your porch so that your child and his friends can get into it whenever they feel like drinking.
- Keep an eye on your child. If you notice any signs of thirst, you should call for a break and have him chill out on the porch – or even inside – with a drink for a few minutes. You should also watch for signs of heat exhaustion. If your child stops sweating, pales or gets dizzy, get him inside immediately and call the doctor.
- Dress your child in cool, comfortable clothing. Light colors absorb less heat than darker ones, for example. Breathable material like cotton is also a good choice. Don’t forget the sunscreen.
- Water – the swimming pool, a water park or the sprinkler – can be a great way to cool off. You should, however, still take breaks from the heat. Just because your child feels cool doesn’t mean that he should stay in direct sunlight for too long.
These tips will help you protect your child from the heat without interfering with his summertime fun. Put on some sunscreen, grab your favorite hat, and get out in the yard with your child. You can create a lot of wonderful memories in your very own back yard this summer.