Happy New Year from Weissbluth Pediatrics!
Winter is coming in full force so we wanted to remind you of some winter safety tips to face this bitter cold! Here are some common questions we receive in office:
How cold is too cold to be outside? There is no hard fast rule on this but it depends on your child’s age. When they are infants it is harder for them to maintain their body heat, so don’t forget to wear lots of layers! For kids of any age, don’t forget to put on a hat as they lose a lot of body heat from their head. Keep exposure to cold at a minimum when the temperatures are below 32 F and try to expose as little skin as possible to the wind. Shivering and blue lips is an early sign of hypothermia so get them inside a warm place.
Car Seat Safety – Make sure your child is buckled up safely in the car and do not put a snowsuit or puffy coat between your child and the straps. This is because the harness will not be able to work well in case of an accident. Instead buckle them in the seat then put a blanket over the straps. This healthychildren.org site has some more information for car seat safety: http://www.healthychildren.org/English/safety-prevention/on-the-go/Pages/Car-Safety-Seats-Information-for-Families.aspx
Sledding/Skiing – Wear a helmet–protect those heads from injury!
Ice Skating – A child fell into a pond recently in Chicagoland, but thankfully he was alright! We do not recommend ice skating on non-regulated rinks due to this risk.
Sun Protection – The sun occasionally peeks through those clouds and we are even more susceptible to sun burns on exposed skin as the snow reflects the sunlight. Don’t forget at least SPF 30 sunscreen to exposed areas and sunglasses with UV protection to keeps those eyes healthy.
There are a lot more tips that you can find online and here are some websites with great information:
- The American Academy of Pediatrics website: http://www.aap.org/en-us/about-the-aap/aap-press-room/news-features-and-safety-tips/Pages/Winter-Safety-Tips.aspx
- There is also a Radio MD segment talking about winter safety tips: http://radiomd.com/show/healthy-children/item/17253-winter-safety-tips-for-your-little-snowman
I hope this helps your family stay warm! Remember, if you are concerned about exposing your child to the cold but need to visit a pediatrician, we are offering house calls and would love to see your child in the comfort of your own home. Please call 312-202-0300 for more information!
-Dr. Diana Metropulos and the Weissbluth Pediatrics team