So says Sarah…

Healthful Mondays: How to stay cool

Posted in Life with Child by Sarah Lipoff on 09/27/2010

© Sarah Lipoff

With the forecast saying it’s going to be another day with record high heat, I’m ready to find the coolest spot possible to hang out for the day with the babe. BUT, that’s not going to happen. We have preschool today and not only will the kiddies be toasty, but us adults, too.

The best way to beat the heat is to avoid it. For those that aren’t able to turn up the air conditioner or spend the day at the mall, there are simple ways to stay safe in extreme temperatures. Start by keeping kids indoors or in shady areas and limiting high energy activities to 15-minute bursts. This helps reduce the potential of heat stroke and some super sweaty kids. Also, make sure to slather on the sunblock if you are planning on more than 30-minutes outdoors. No one wants a sunburn on top of heat stroke.

It doesn’t matter what age you are, when the heat is high, you must stay hydrated. That means get out those colorful cups or water bottles and drink up. Water is the best, but if you’re not a huge fan – or your kiddo isn’t having it – water down some juice, herbal tea, or sports drink. For every 90-pounds an individual weighs, they should be tossing back at least 5-ounces of liquid every 20 to 30-minutes.

Along with staying hydrated and taking it easy in extreme heat, enjoy some water play. It doesn’t matter how old you are, get out the spray bottles, hose, kiddie pool – whatever you got – and soak up some water. Surrounding yourself in cool water helps keep your internal temp low, which makes the high heat tolerable (and maybe a little fun).

You can also indulge in my favorite hot-day helper – popsicles! They are easy to make yourself and are quite healthy! Hitting the kitchen and concocting some fun and super-cold popsicles is a great way to teach your child about cooking, spend some quality time together, and create a tasty treat!

No matter what you choose to do on a hot day, keep the communication rolling. Ask kids and adults around you how they’re feeling and keep tabs on their behavior. Heat stroke can happen quickly and no one wants to make a trip to the ER, which totally ruins the day.

Stay cool!