Sydney can become very hot and humid in summer. With some simple precautions you and your family can avoid dehydration and other heat-related health problems.
During hot weather, young children become dehydrated more easily." Says Paediatric Staff Specialist Phil Coote from Royal Prince Alfred Hospital.
"This is the most common heat-related problem for children, especially those who are very young."
Breastfed babies may need to feed more frequently during the heat, and toddlers and older children should be given easy access to drinking water and encouraged to drink regularly.
Dr Coote recommends keeping children out of direct sunlight and preferably indoors during extreme heat. Using fans or air-conditioning will help them keep cool.
"Wherever possible, plan your days to avoid the worst of the heat. This could mean using the early part of the morning for outdoor activities or rescheduling for cooler days" says Dr Coote.
If you have access to a swimming pool to cool off, be sure to use hats and sunscreen and never leave children unattended. If you use a public swimming pool or water play area click here for tips on how to stay healthy.
Although it is uncommon in children, dehydration can lead to heat exhaustion or heat stroke, causing headaches and vomiting. Dr Coote says if you think your child is affected, take them into a cool environment as soon as possible, give them plenty of water to drink and cool their body down with a shower or bath.