The back-to-school shuffle is finally here, and parents and their children alike are busy adjusting to new schedules. After-school fall sports are in full swing, which may make kids more likely to sustain injuries. Though coaches and teachers have the best intentions when it comes to keeping your children safe, there are things that you, as a parent, can do to maximize their safety all season long. Here’s how you can keep your child healthy on and off the field this fall.
Keep Them Hydrated
Dehydration can set in earlier in children than it does for healthy adults – the younger the child, the quicker dehydration can occur. During the cooler fall months, kids will also be less likely to rehydrate, as their perception of effort may be less at lower temperatures. Send them to school with a water bottle and encourage them to refill frequently during the day and at practices. At dinner and other meals at home, offer water – not juices or pop.
RELATED ARTICLE: Signs of Dehydration in Children
Check Their Equipment
Sports equipment, particularly used school gear, can fall into disrepair and do its job less effectively. For contact sports such as football and soccer, snug fitting protective equipment can help protect against serious injury or concussion. If school equipment does not seem to be well-maintained, consider purchasing your own for the season or encouraging the school to buy more for the team. Always be on the lookout for signs of disorientation, confusion, dizziness, or nausea or vomiting, which could be indicative of a concussion.
Avoid Overexertion in the Heat
Though it is still September, the Chicago area is known for having temps well into the 80s throughout the month. When kids are pushing themselves physically, heat-related illnesses can occur. Heat exhaustion, heat cramps, and even a heat stroke pose a threat to children and teens, particularly those who push themselves and don’t know when to take a break. Football players are particularly vulnerable to heat-related illnesses due the equipment they wear – studies show they are over 11 times more likely to suffer a heat- related illness than any other sport combined.
RELATED ARTICLE: Heat Exhaustion vs. Heat Stroke: Do You Know the Difference?
Communicate With Your Kids about Safety
Talk to your kids about knowing their limits and taking rests throughout practice, especially during the heat. Make sure your child’s coaches are on board and that they know safety trumps any need to develop toughness or “grit.” When a child does come home from a hot practice, make sure they drink plenty of fluids, including water and sports drinks to replace electrolytes.
We at Premier Urgent care hope you have a safe and fun fall sports season! If you do need help, our providers are available for immediate care.
Contact Premier Urgent Care Chicago
Premier Urgent Care Center provides high-quality healthcare throughout the Chicago area, with urgent care services that are quick, convenient, and compassionate. We have a staff of highly trained and board certified physicians and physician assistants who can address the immediate healthcare needs of your whole family.
If you have any questions, don’t hesitate to contact us for immediate care.
Better Providers. Better Care.
Learn why patients have come to trust Premier Urgent Care. Visit https://premierucchicago.com.