6 ways to keep the kids cool during the coming heatwave
Everyone loves the sunshine, especially the kids when blue skies, playgrounds, sandpits, trips to the seaside and ice cream are on the agenda.
But what about when it gets really hot and sticky?The Met Office is forecasting temperatures as high as 31C (88F) this weekend, with most of the sizzling sunshine blanketing southern and western parts of the UK.
And inevitably, with hot air comes hot tempers – especially if you’re a toddler not used to struggling in the heat.
Here’s how to keep the little’uns smiling and well hydrated, as temperatures soar…
1. Make sure they drink plenty of fluids
According to the NHS, because babies and infants have a low body weight, they’re sensitive to even small amounts of fluid loss, and are more at risk of dehydration.
If they refuse to drink water, try making it into a game. Let them choose a cute cup, freeze ice cubes in fun shapes, choose wild and crazy straws and let them see you drink water – kids love to copy and play at being grown-ups. Have fruit ice lollies on standby too.
2. Keep their faces shaded
To be sun-safe, encourage your kids to wear a baseball cap or sweet, floppy hat with a wide brim – and to keep it on. Not only will it help protect their faces from harmful UVB rays (and even better if they’re covered in sun block too), it will shade them from direct heat and provide a bit of shade. Pop on kids’ sunglasses such as Baby and Kidz Banz, as well to cover all bases.
3. If they’re playing outdoors, build a makeshift tent or teepee
The closest thing to camping, building a tent or teepee in the garden is a great way to entertain the kids and make playtime that much more fun, while keeping them cool. Even a double sheet will do. Of course it helps if you have trees in the garden to peg one or sheets to, otherwise a washing line, fence or investing in a children’s teepee will ensure hours of shady fun.
4. Fill up the paddling pool
Not just for the young at heart, XL paddling pools are a thing. Easy to inflate, you can always top the water level up with bags of ice – pop a parasol to one side and you’ll feel like you’re on a chilled family holiday without the bother of having to pack. Ta da!
5. Remember to help them keep their cool at night too
Along with loosely fitting summer sleepwear, shortie baby grows, thin cotton vests etc, it’s important to use cotton bed sheets, pull the curtains during the day (to keep the rays out) and try to get a breeze going with a window kept ajar. Luke warm baths, cold flannels, beakers of cold water by the bed and even bowls of ice can also work wonders.
6. Fill the freezer up with peas
It’s not just grown-ups who suffer from hot, swollen feet. Even tiny toes can feel discomfort (prickly heat etc.) and the best ‘heat hack’ is a bag of frozen peas. Easy peasy (excuse the pun), simply pop your kid’s (and yours) feet on the bag (wrapped in a tea towel!), gently wiggle your toes, dig them into the frozen beads and make the most of that aha moment.
The Press Association
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