I have a close friend here is Arizona, resident like myself and father of 3 young boys, much like myself. Somewhat surprisingly, our most popular topic of conversation is not the NFL or the NBA but rather how to deal with the insane heat that this part of the world is exposed to on an annual basis, and how we can protect our kids as best we can.
Each and every year during the summer months in Tucson, there are many children hospitalised because of the heat and both my friend and I refuse to be accused of being a father that did not do enough to prevent the death or illness of our child as a result of a little bit of sunshine. For this reason we are always conscious of our children with regards to the sunshine and if you want some tips on keeping the kids cool in the blistering heat, here are my tips.
Nighties can be particularly troubling for young kids and you need to do all that you can to make sure that they are sleeping in a cool environment. The first step is to put black out curtains on the windows and keep them closed all day to reduce the heat coming in. Make sure that you are putting a fan inside their room on at night and that you also avoid air con as the air which it produces can damage their throats.
Try putting some frozen bottles of water in your kid’s room before they sleep, as they melt they will produce cold air.
With my children I like to dress them in a way that they feel covered up yet without wearing clothing that is uncomfortable or heavy. Occasionally I will put my kids in shorts and t-shirts or even just in their swimsuits, but I will only do this if they are to going to be exposed to direct sunlight. The key is to keep your kids feeling as conformable as possible.
Out and About
When you are out in the sunshine you need to ensure that you are using a high factor suncream to protect your children from the sun’s rays. Top up suncream regularly and don’t worry about putting too much on. If you are going to be in direct sunlight then you should also make sure that your kids are wearing hats to protect their heads.
When kids get dehydrated they can become lethargic and uncomfortable and it is your job to recognise the signs if they come. To avoid any symptoms at all, you should make sure that your kids are constantly topping up their fluid levels with water or juice. The sun and the heat can take a great deal out of kids and even if they do not want to drink, you must make sure that they are taking plenty of water so that they can cope with the heat and keep their temperatures down.