If you are a mom, you would describe summer as the time when children are home on a break. They do have school assignments to complete, but let’s get real. They spend a lot of time playing all day, especially outside. And then after getting all sweaty, they expect you to give them a bowl of ice cream or cooling drinks. But summer isn’t just about playing, relaxing and eating. Summer health problems in children can be quite common. So, learn about them and don’t let them spoil your or your child’s summer.
Health Shots connected with Dr Jesal Sheth, Senior Consultant – Paediatrics, Fortis Hospital, Mulund, Maharashtra, and Dr Amit Gupta, consultant paediatrics, Fortis Escorts Hospital, Faridabad to talk about the summer health problems for children..
Summer health problems children can face
Summer brings heat, so children have the inclination to eat outside, eat cold items, keep the air conditioner on, or play outdoors. Due to this, children can face the following health issues.
1. Heat stroke
If your child gets exposed to high temperatures for a long time, the little one can experience heat stroke. Dr Gupta says that it generally occurs when the ambient temperatures are more than 40 degrees Celsius and the heat is absorbed by the skin surface. You’ll know if your child has been struck by heat stroke if the kid is very warm to touch or has high fever or has dry tongue. Eventually your child may become unconscious.
Children love to play outside if they aren’t hooked to their phones. Playing outside for hours means exposing skin to direct sunlight for long duration. The skin becomes red and discoloured because of the harmful sun rays when sunburn happens.
3. Bacterial growth
Bacterial growth is very high during high temperatures and humidity in summer. Dr Gupta says that because of this, there are more cases related to food and waterborne diseases. The food becomes stale and toxins are released leading to food poisoning. Because of bacterial overgrowth, it may lead to diseases like gastroenteritis or hepatitis A or typhoid. Children with such diseases may have abdominal discomfort, loose motions or fever and jaundice sometimes.
When children play outside, they don’t think about the heat. They get so engrossed in their games that they don’t even take a break and drink water, which can lead to dehydration. So, watch out for the signs of dehydration in your child.
5. Insect bites
Mosquitoes and insects love summer season as much as your child. The evidence can be seen in the form of insect bites on your child’s body.
Tips to make sure kids don’t fall ill during summer
Dr Sheth says that children who are mobile and play or go outdoors often, are more at risk. But does that mean you should completely stop them from playing outside during summer?
Here’s what you can do to protect your child during summer –
• Give plenty of fluids to your child for hydration. Carry water or coconut water or homemade juices if you are out with the child.
• Make your child wear full sleeve clothes, but make sure the fabric is cotton.
• Avoid giving your kid unhygienic and uncooked food.
• Maintain hygiene by making your kid wash his or her hands regularly, and also keep the house clean.
• Always give your child boiled water.
• Keep your child away from places with lots of plants that attract bees and different types of insects.
• Apply insect repellant before sending your kid out to play.