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Heatstroke in Children and How to Prevent It

outdoor child

Climate change is the reason for numerous radical changes in our environment; temperatures now constantly change from hot to cool to hot again. When constant radical changes occur in the temperature around us, it can lead to deadly consequences such as heat stroke.

Cases of heat stroke more often than not occur during the summer. Aside from that, people of all ages can suffer a heat stroke, especially children. Children’s bodies are weaker and can’t adapt fast to rapid changes in the environment, making them an easy target for heat strokes. 

You should take it upon yourself to take care of your children, especially if they have a habit of playing outside where it’s hot. That said, what are the symptoms of heatstroke in children? How do you keep them safe?

In this article, we’ll shed light on that. Read on below.

Understanding Heat Exhaustion

Before the actual stroke occurs, children may show milder signs of heat-related illnesses such as cramps or exhaustion. This happens when children get dehydrated from spending time in the heat for an extended period. Aside from that, they also lose fluids and salt from sweating. 

Below are signs of heat exhaustion.

  • Having cool skin temperature, despite the heat
  • Fainting
  • Dizziness or headaches (can also lead to vomiting)
  • A feeling of weakness
  • Increased rate of sweating
  • Increased thirstiness
  • Muscle cramps

For other children, however, they are at a higher risk of heat exhaustion if they:

  • Are overweight or obese
  • Are suffering from sickness
  • Are taking certain medications
  • Have a sunburn

Symptoms of Heat Stroke

The onset of heatstroke in children is if their body produces more heat than they can release. Since this heat takes up a child’s body, it can lead to a heat stroke. Below are some other symptoms of heatstroke that you should look out for.

  • A high body temperature, which is above 104° Fahrenheit, or 40° Celcius
  • Heating and drying of the skin
  • Fainting
  • Rapid heartbeat and breathing
  • Severe headaches
  • Seizures

Heat Stroke Prevention

Heat strokes and other heat-related illnesses can be daunting when you think about them, especially if your child experiences them firsthand. However, you should not worry because there are preventative measures that you can take. Keep in mind that these measures are not only exclusive for children but adults as well.

#1: Drink Lots of Water

Since children lose sweat and other bodily fluids if they spend a lot of time outside, they need to drink lots of water. While the ideal amount of water to be drunk in a day is about 8-10 glasses, it’s always a good idea to add a little bit more. Water cools the body, which also keeps it safe from heat illnesses.

#2: Wear Appropriate Clothes in Season

During the summer, the temperature could go up to 96°F and above. If you’re wearing thick clothes, it can cause you to accumulate too much heat in the body, leading to heat exhaustion or heat stroke in the worst-case scenario. Wear clothes that are breathable and thin so that you will be safe from the heat.

#3: Find a Cool Space

The easiest way to prevent heat exhaustion and heat strokes is to have a constantly perfect space. At home, you should have a room that has an AC unit. Having an AC unit cools an entire room, and if you stay in it, you’re immediately safe from heat-related illnesses.

Conclusion

Heatstroke targets anyone, and even children aren’t safe from them. However, you can spot the signs that they are suffering from heat-related illnesses. There are also steps that you can take to keep them safe from heat-related conditions. Their fun time might be affected, but they should be able to understand that you’re only taking care of them.

For children to avoid heat strokes, they must be placed in pediatric care. Pediatricians specialize in monitoring the health conditions of patients from birth. If you’re looking for pediatric doctors in New Jersey for your child, Agile Urgent Care has you covered. Our medical professionals can help you with treatment should your child get sick. Contact us today for a consultation.

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