Children’s small bodies lose heat significantly faster than adults. They also are known to ignore the cold for the sake of having fun and lack the judgment to get out of the cold when they should. This all makes your child at high risk for developing frostbite, a condition in which the skin and underlying tissues freeze. Keeping your child safe this winter is up to you as the parent or caregiver. Luckily, you can keep your little one safe all season and prevent frostbite with a few simple steps.
Know the Signs of Frostbite. Awareness is the key to keeping both you and your children safe. Make sure both you and your child know what signs to watch for. A few common signs of frostbite are:
- Reddened skin that becomes white, hard, and swollen with continued exposure
- Burning, tingling sensation
- Numbness or loss of muscle control
- Blisters and/or blackened skin in severe cases
Layer Up. Be sure your child is dressed in layers than can trap heat and wick away moisture. It’s especially important that exposed areas – like hands, feet, neck, head, and ears – are covered at all times because these are the first areas to develop frostbite.
Use Your Instincts. Know when to take your child inside from the cold and when weather conditions are too extreme. Take your child indoors often to take a break, warm up, and have a warm snack or drink.
The risk of frostbite doesn’t mean your child can’t enjoy winter fun outdoors but, it’s important to keep them safe with a few precautions.