Summer is here! We have been waiting for the warm days and other advantages the season offers for so long. Now that they are here, we must keep in mind that the sun can be very damaging too. Here are a few suggestions to help you avoid heat strokes. Precautions are necessary. It is important to be very attentive to the signs of heat strokes.
Symptoms and remedies for heat strokes
Children are often affected by heat strokes at the beginning of a heat wave since their bodies are not accustomed to the heat. Their body temperature quickly reaches 40⁰C or more. They usually experience vomiting, nausea, dizziness, and headaches.
If a child experiences any of the abovementioned symptoms, immediately take him to a dark, cool, and calm area. Remove any extra clothing and apply cool water with a sponge.
The golden rules
- Have children wear hats which cover their head and prevent the sun from bothering their vision (children should not wear sunglasses because some may harm their vision, see an optometrist)
- Drink lots and lots of water
- Avoid prolonged periods in the sun
Activity and intervention suggestions
- Organize your backyard so shady areas are always accessible. If natural shade is unavailable, use an awning or build a small roof with blankets tied to your fence.
- It is preferable to have a small roof above your sandbox area. Children tend to spend long periods of time in this area.
- When swimming is not possible but the weather is adequate, offer water games. Fill bins with water and add containers, small soft toys, sponges, etc.
- Fill spray bottles with water and let children play with them.
- Create an outdoor relaxation corner where children can go to take a break from their high energy games. Lay small mats on the ground. Include blankets and cushions. Prepare bins which contain books, puzzles, a song book... The contents of these bins should be available only in this area to maintain a certain novelty effect. The goal is to encourage children to appreciate the advantages of a little quiet time.
- Make drinking water available at all times. You may choose to have a drinking glass for each child outdoors. Identify the drinking glasses with pictograms children can easily recognize. Leave the glasses in the shade.