All across the country, temperatures are plummeting and parents are scrambling to make sure that kids have all of the necessary gear to stay warm. Kids’ bodies are not as adept at regulating body temperature as adults, so extra precautions should be taken. Whether children are staying at the bus stop or playing outside, parents should make sure that clothing is adequate to fight the chill.
Bundling is Best
When children wear several layers, it keeps the body heat inside better than single layers. When moving from outside to inside areas, layers also give children the option to still keep a few layers on in rooms that may be chilly but not as cold as outside. When bundling children up, parents should make sure that children still have circulation and that layers are not uncomfortably tight. Reduced circulation may increase risks of frostbite.
Cover the Extremities
Ears, noses, and fingers are more susceptible to frostbite than other body areas because of the exposed nature of these extremities and the small amount of blood flow that naturally occurs in these areas. Kids should always wear a hat, scarf, and gloves to cover up these sensitive areas. If necessary, a ski mask may provide better facial coverage on really cold days.
Reduce Outdoor Time
While playing in the snow is fun, parents may wish to restrict children to 15-20 minute outdoor intervals on days that are below freezing. It is important that parents find indoor activities to keep kids active throughout the winter months. When staying at the bus stop, parents may wish to encourage kids to skip or jump around to keep circulation and body temperature high. If temperatures become extremely cold or bus waits become unpredictable, parents may wish to drive to the bus stop and keep kids in a warm car for the wait.