“Winter is coming!” as the show Game of thrones says. When the white wind blows, we must protect our little ones. It’s cliché that winter is a tough season for young blood. It’s true as maintaining the absolute body temperature is harder for children. Studies show that babies can catch up to 8 to 10 colds per year before the age of 2.
The main reason why kids and babies are at risk is, their immature immune system. Children have to build immunity against 100 different viruses. Another reason is their exposure; children spend more time indoors and getting close contact with infected surfaces and other children.
As the days are becoming less hot, kids are getting more excited by the onset of winter activities and parents are nerving to make it safe and healthy.
Risks Attached With Cold Weather.
It’s crucial to acknowledge the conditions in order to avoid them.
● Cold and flu
The risk of getting viral infection increases due to close contacts and more indoor activities.
● Dry skin
Cold and dry wind can be really harsh for the soft and young skin. The less humidity in the air can cause chapped lips and dry skin.
● Viral Respiratory infections
It is believed that almost all children have experienced RSV once before the age of two. In severe cases, it may cause shortness and difficulty in breathing.
It may occur when your child is exposed to cold air, water, or wind for a long period. Infants are at risk because they cannot produce heat as fast as they are losing it.
In extreme cases of prolonged exposure to cold weather, children are at great risk of frostbite. This can be really severe at times with temporary or permanent functional loss.
Getting Ready For Winter
Precautions are always better than cures. There are 5 things that help to avoid any medical conditions during the winter.
● Get a yearly flu vaccine
Doctors suggest a flu shot every year in the fall. Consult the pediatrician near you and plan a flu vaccination for the children as it avoids any kind of influenza, cold, and cough.
● Develop hand washing habits
Washing hands is the most effective way to get rid of any germs and microbes. Teaching kids the importance and how to wash hands is necessary. As the children develop the habit of washing hands time and again, it mitigates the risks of getting infected.
● Cough etiquettes
Many winter diseases spread due to the transmission of germs in the form of droplets. By teaching children cough etiquettes, the infection transmission can be reduced. Teach children to cover the mouth and nose with tissue paper when sneezing or cough and then dump it in the trash. If tissue is not available, use the inside of the elbow.
● Taking sunshine
Research shows that exposure to summer sun is beneficial for winter. The intake of vitamin D is so crucial for growing and developing bodies. It not only strengthens the bones of growing kids but also helps maintain a joyful mood throughout the winter.
● Balanced diet
Strengthening the immunity of children for winter is a prerequisite. Meals optimized with nutrients boost the immune system that helps fight any infections.
Safety Checks During The Winter
● Warm clothing
For insulating, the children’s body temperature warm clothing is so crucial. Dress children and babies in layers. Have children cover their heads and ears. Whenever going outside have children wear warm shoes and gloves. Remove any sort of wet clothing immediately.
Skincare is requisite to keep the skin smooth and delicate throughout the winter. The idea is to keep the skin hydrated as the humidity outside drops. Use the moisturizer all the time. Use lip balm to avoid chapped lips. Whenever going or playing outdoors, always use sunscreen.
● Balanced diet
Winter is tough for the health of young children and babies. Drinking fluids helps fight the flu and cold. Increase the use of soups and fresh green vegetables. Fruits with vitamins C and E are preferred.
● Specific medical condition
If your children have medical conditions that can trigger in winter, make sure to consult the local pediatrician. Always check if the activity is safe for them and what are the dos and don’ts in the condition. Asthma and heart attacks are one of many conditions that can get worse in winter if not taken precautions.
There are risks attached to the fun activities winter brings. Limiting the activities is not the solution as it may cause seasonal depression in children. Strong supervision is required in winter times as young children do not know what is safe and what is not. Keep children hydrated, warm, and energized. In case if one gets sick, keep others away. Let go of any bad energy and let children frolic.