Pediatrician talks keeping kids safe in summer heat

Published: Jun. 25, 2022 at 4:40 PM CDT
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MONTGOMERY, Ala. (WSFA) - Temperatures that feel like 100 degrees can be too much for anyone, and pediatrician Dr. Karen Landers with the Alabama Department of Public Health explained young children, like infants, are particularly vulnerable.

“Obviously they’re not going to be able to tell you their signs or symptoms,” Landers said.

It is not just little kids. Even older children can be affected. It is something for parents to consider with summer camps and outdoor activities in full swing.

“We know that our young adolescents are motivated, especially in sports,” Landers said. “They want to push on through. They want to show that they can do this and show what they’re made of, but we know that our coaches work very, very hard in ensuring that their teams can play and exercise and get the training that they need, but also stay safe.”

The doctor urged parents to make sure their little ones are taking plenty of breaks, especially during peak hours of the day.

She also wants kids to stay hydrated, and that means putting down caffeinated drinks.

“Caffeine can actually be a diuretic, so it can actually pull fluids out of the body,” Landers said. “The sugar is not really helpful past a small level of carbohydrate there.”

While kids can still drink a little juice or soda, Landers wants parents to primarily stick to water and electrolyte drinks.

Alongside beating the beat, the pediatrician stressed the need for children playing outside to wear plenty of sunscreen to avoid being burnt.

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