Protecting Your Kids from Common Summer Ailments

Summer is a season of joy and relaxation, especially for families with young children. It's a time when days are filled with carefree moments, from sleeping in to playing outdoors until the sun sets. However, amidst the fun, it's important to be mindful of the health risks that come with the summer heat. Makati Medical Center's Department of Pediatrics offers valuable insights into how to protect your little ones from common summer ailments.

One of the primary concerns during summer is skin conditions, particularly prickly heat or bungang araw. This itchy rash occurs when sweat glands become blocked, preventing sweat from evaporating properly. Dr. Angelica Cecilia Tomas from MakatiMed explains that children are more prone to this condition due to their developing sweat glands. To alleviate discomfort, apply calamine lotion or talcum powder and ensure children wear loose, light-colored clothing to stay cool.

While outdoor play is encouraged, it's essential to be cautious of sun exposure. Dr. Tomas recommends outdoor activities during the morning hours and taking breaks or seeking shaded areas when the sun's rays are most intense (between 10 am and 4 pm). Hydration is also crucial, with children advised to drink at least 8 glasses of water daily.

Food-and-water-borne diseases are more prevalent in hot weather, making food poisoning a common concern during summer. Dr. Tomas emphasizes the importance of food safety, including proper handwashing, thorough cooking of food, immediate consumption after cooking, and storing food in clean containers. Symptoms of food poisoning include upset stomach, vomiting, diarrhea, and fever. If your child shows signs of these symptoms, ensure they stay hydrated and seek medical attention if necessary.

Measles, known as tigdas, is another disease that peaks during summer months in the Philippines. Vaccination is key to preventing measles, with the first dose recommended at 9 months of age. Symptoms include high fever, cough, runny nose, and a rash. Dr. Tomas highlights the importance of vaccination to protect children from this highly contagious virus.

Sore eyes, or conjunctivitis, can also occur during summer, spreading through contact with infected eye secretions. Dr. Tomas advises maintaining good hygiene practices, such as regular handwashing and avoiding touching the eyes with dirty hands. If symptoms persist or affect vision, seek medical advice promptly.

In conclusion, while summer is a time for fun and adventure, it's crucial to prioritize your child's health. By following these tips from MakatiMed's Department of Pediatrics, you can ensure that your family enjoys a safe and healthy summer. For more information, contact MakatiMed On-Call or visit their website.

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