Temperatures are rising! How do you keep the children cool?

Drink lots of water, stay in the shade, slather on the sunscreen and wear a cap…..it sounds like common sense.

We spend a lot of time in Madrid where temperatures reach over 40ºC and stepping out of your door is like stepping into an oven.

Here are some of our tips for keeping cool in the city:

  1. Keep a couple of large mineral water bottles in the freezer.

If you have a long journey, the children have a sports event, or you decide to pop to the beach or park to take advantage of good weather, it’s always handy to keep water in the freezer. By the time you reach your destination, some ice will have melted, and the water will maintain the cold temperature for a few hours.

2.  Try to limit being out of doors to early morning and late afternoon. When indoors, when it is hotter outside than in, close all windows and shutters to keep the heat out.

By avoiding outdoor activities at the hottest times of the day, you limit sun and heat exposure. In really hot weather, try to maintain the temperature in doors by shutting the heat out.

3. If you do have to be outside the entire day, make sure shoulders are covered up and try to wear light coloured clothing. If you are on the beach, a hammam towel is a handy cover up if you do have over exposure.

Don’t imagine that the children will be cooler just because the are wearing sleeveless T shirts or tops. A white Tshirt or shirt will keep you far cooler than a sleeveless black one!

4. Sunscreen needs to be applied to the ears and parting too!

According the doctors, these areas are the most often forgotten. Remember that skin on ears is very sensitive to the sun, and hair may protect the scalp, but partings are susceptible to burning. A part from wearing a hat, we should make sure that sun screen has been applied to these areas.

5. Just because it’s sunny, don’t over do it!

As Brits, we are so sun starved that even a few rays will make us throw caution to the wind and tempt us to stay in the sun all day. This is the biggest error we could make. Be sensible. You won’t get a tan by soaking up the rays all day – you’ll just get burnt. Avoid direct sun on terraces, street and in the park. Choose a table in the shade, walk on the shady side of the road, don’t let the children play on playgrounds directly in the sun.

You may also find the following pages useful:

NHS guidelines – how to keep my baby cool

Heatstroke – the facts

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