Heat stroke to food poisoning; common summer ailments in kids and tips to manage them
Summer season can put your child at risk of digestive issues and heat-related ailments. Here's what parents should do.
Kids are full of energy and are especially in playful mood during summers as it's vacation time for them. They may not pay attention to hand hygiene and are thus at a greater risk to contract seasonal infections. Considering the outdoor time during summer vacation naturally increases, kids are at risk of heat illnesses like dehydration, heat stroke and heat rashes. Parents also need to pay attention to what their kids are consuming during summer as not having sufficient fluids or hydrating foods can make them dehydrated and low on energy during the hot months. Also going overboard on junk food and sugar-laden treats can cause acidity and constipation in the little ones. (Also read: Summer nutrition tips for your pet to prevent dehydration)
"Just like winter, even the summer season brings along a host of health problems with it. Parents will have to be extra cautious and pay attention to their child’s health," says Dr Suresh Birajdar, Neonatologist & Paediatrician, Motherhood Hospital, Kharghar.
Dr Birajdar shares common summer problems and tips to manage them in an interview with HT Digital.
It is a no-brainer that drinking contaminated water can invite a plethora of health problems that can wreak havoc with your child's health. The kids may be prone to typhoid, diarrhoea, cholera, jaundice, and dysentery during summer season. Parents must carry water bottles while traveling with kids on a vacation. Also, parents should not forget to boil water before drinking.
Conjunctivitis (pink eye)
This means an inflammation of the conjunctiva. It can cause redness, itching, and eye inflammation. Hence, parents should ensure that the child receives timely intervention. Put eye drops prescribed by the doctor only. Do not rub your eyes or share personal items with anyone as conjunctivitis is contagious.
During summer, children tend to indulge in ice creams and cold drinks. This can lead to throat congestion. Moderation in eating these items is advised. So, it is better to give children home-cooked food and help them to stay healthy.
Urinary Tract Infection (UTI)
This is an infection in any part of your urinary system including the kidneys, ureters, bladder, and urethra. Cases of UTIs often rise in children during summer as the child doesn’t drink enough water. Parents should see to it that the child follows good personal hygiene practices.
This is a common occurrence in summer owing to contaminated food or water. The warm and humid weather sets the stage for the growth of bacteria which can contaminate food. The child can exhibit signs and symptoms such as stomach pain, nausea, diarrhoea, or vomiting. So, avoid eating roadside food or even uncooked food.
The scorching heat will make the child dehydrated. The child should drink enough water to maintain an electrolyte balance. Also, give him/her coconut water, buttermilk, and lemon water to stay hydrated. Include muskmelon, watermelon, and cucumber in the diet. Avoid concentrated fruit juices and lemonades with excess sugars.
This may happen if the child goes out in the sun without taking proper care. Sudden exposure to heat can give heatstroke and the person suffers from fever and which can be fatal sometimes. So, avoid venturing out when there is scorching heat (that is from 2:00 pm to 4:00 pm).
This may frequently happen during summer months and the child will be advised ointments by the doctor.