Keeping Children Warm This Cold Season
July 10, 2017
Let’s be honest, when it comes to dressing our babies for the weather we sometimes tend to go to the extreme as parents. Every new born I go to visit is either over or under dressed, this is especially true for first time parents. As my aunt-in-law likes to put it “you meet a baby whom you can peal like an onion” and yes she was referring to our new born baby so everyone is guilty ?
Most parts of Kenya have been particularly cold this month with areas even experiencing hail stones. So how do we keep our little ones warm this session?
1) Layering: The trick about dressing your child in 3 or so layers of clothes as opposed to just one heavy coat is that the air spaces between the clothes trap heat and act as an insulation. The number of layers you dress your child in will depend on the weather and how warm the clothes are. However, more often than not you are advised to dress your child in one extra layer than yourself as due to their small size children lose heat faster than adults. Also, make sure that the inner most layer is fitting and the outer most layer is loss to allow for ease of movement, blood circulation and comfortable.
2) Smart dressing: By this I mean dressing your child with the activities for the day in mind. For example, if you are dressing a baby you will definitely need to change their diaper at some point during the day. Therefore, dress them in something that doesn’t require the entire outfit to be removed during a diaper change. Make it something easy to remove and put on quickly to reduce the amount of time they are exposed.
3) Avoid overheating: As mentioned earlier, overdressing is almost as bad as under-dressing your kids. This is because the overheating will lead to sweat which will make their clothes wet which will eventually become cold.
4) Use water proof shoes: If you have a school going child who is bound to pass by a puddle of water, dress them in some water proof shoes. Since you can’t prevent them completely from stumping around in the puddle of water, the water proof shoes will help keep their soaks dry and hence their feet warm throughout the day.
5) Use hooded outfits instead of hats: Children tend to lose their hats when they go out to play which increases the time they remain exposed to the cold. If possible, you could dress them in a hooded jumper hence even if it comes off, they can always put it back on and they don’t lose it.
6) Beware of choking hazards: Scarfs and hood strings can be a choking hazard so it is important to be mindful of this when dressing your kids, especially the younger ones. You could try alternatives like hoods that don’t have strings or turtle-neck outfits.
7) Keep everything clean and dry: Wet clothes will make your child feel cold, while dirt logs the airspace in clothing which affects insulation. Therefore, it is important to keep your child’s clothes clean and dry.
8) Carry spare clothes: This goes hand in hand with point 7 above; by carrying a spare change of warm clothes should your child fall into mud or spill water on themselves helps to keep them warm and dry. If traveling, try to carry 1-2 days’ worth of extra clothes should you find yourself extending your stay.
9) Keep clothes in good condition: A missing button or a stuck zippers provides an opening for cold to pass through the clothes. Therefore, make sure you keep your little one’s clothes in good condition earlier on so that when you need them you are not rushing at the last minute to getting things fixed.
10) Keep food and drinks warm: Avoid giving your child cold drinks and food to help keep their core body temperature warm.
Have any additional tips on how to keep children warm this cold season? Feel free to share them in the comment section below.