Winter certainly isn’t here yet, but it is just around the corner. It’s a fun season, too—especially if you’re a kid. There are snowmen to build, hills to sled, and snowballs to throw. These activities are all made even better by the school break during the holidays. However, winter can be a season ripe for sicknesses and injuries as well.
There are effective measures you can take as a parent to keep your kids healthy and safe during the winter months. Take a look at the tips below for some guidance on making this winter the best one yet.
Wash Those Hands
Our immune systems tend to become compromised during the winter due to the cold weather. Frigid air also irritates our respiratory tracts and the membranes in our noses. As a result, we’re more susceptible to contagious illnesses.
One of the best ways to keep from getting sick is frequent handwashing. Make sure your kids use warm water and soap and scrub after playing outdoors, before meals, after using the bathroom, and after coughing or sneezing. Of course, if your child starts showing symptoms of being sick, seek pediatric care.
Don’t wait until winter for this one. The influenza vaccine doesn’t do much good if you put it off until your child already has the flu.
The flu can mean much more than inconvenience and some missed school days. In fact, it can lead to other serious illnesses like pneumonia. Contact your pediatrician’s office in Westminster to inquire about getting this year’s flu vaccine for your child.
Of course, your little ones need to be bundled up for winter weather. Dressing in many warm layers is always best.Also, be sure that clothes are changed if they become wet.
Don’t neglect the feet, either. Warm socks and boots are a necessity. If your child doesn’t have any thick or woolen socks, several pairs of thin cotton socks can be layered over each other.
Even the best winter clothing won’t protect against long hours spent outdoors on especially frigid days. Be aware of the symptoms of frostbite and hypothermia. These include pale, gray, or blistered noses, fingers, and toes. Watch out for extreme fatigue, shivering, confusion, or slurred speech. If your child shows any of these signs, seek immediate pediatric care.
If your child is going sledding, skating, or snowboarding or is engaging in other sports this winter, warm clothing isn’t enough. Have them wear a helmet and padding at all times. Prevention is the best cure for any injury.
Naturally, you always keep your child hydrated in hot weather, but getting enough fluids is just as important in the winter. Although they may not be losing water by sweating, your child can become dehydrated in cold weather from water loss just by breathing. Make sure to have them take regular play breaks to drink water instead of hot chocolate or soda.