Created on: July 21, 2010
Kids love to play outdoors. In fact, this is one of the most important aspects in growing up not only in developing their physical fitness but also to develop social skills which need to grow along with the child. Although playing outdoors is a good idea, in certain instances, too much of outdoor activities especially in un-conducive climates might lead to health problems.
One instance in which the kids can develop health problems is when they play in the hot sun for a prolonged period. But, even in a milder climate, if the activities are vigorous things can become bad. Among these health hazards, dehydration should top the list and as parents and caregivers, we need to take every effort to avoid such manifestations while the kids are playing outdoors.
Thus, when a child complains of thirst, dizziness, uneasiness, inability to continue for some reason after a session in the outdoors, we need to take note and assess the child of being dehydrated to prevent any further complications. The detection would be rather difficult and at times, you may have to trust your instincts. But, at no time you should be reluctant to give your child the necessary fluids.
Let us now see what measures can be taken in order to prevent these kids from getting dehydrated at times of playing outdoors.
-Avoid hot sun when allowing kids to go out and play.
-Make them adequately hydrated before start of play to keep them going.
-Instruct them to take fluids as they feel the thirst to avoid becoming dehydrated.
-Make them wear hats, caps and light clothing to minimize the fluid loss and well as the heat.
-Let them have plenty of rest after a session of outdoor play activities before starting another session.
-Avoid giving carbonated drinks to replenish the lost body fluids and to recover from dehydration.
-Dress them preferably in light clothing if the possibility of suns exposure is high.
-Cool them down as and when necessary during prolonged exposure to sun’s heat.
-Have an extra pair of jerseys and trousers to change when the existing once get drenched in sweat.
In any event, if the child seems to be excessively tired and lifeless, stopping the activity and replenishing the fluid requirements should be undertaken. At no point should a child be forced to go outdoors in such instances without proper protection and being adequately re-hydrated.
If you are in doubt whether the childs dehydration is adequately tackled, it is always best to take the advice of your health care provider for further management.
Learn more about this author, Dr Pandula Siribaddana.
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