Keeping kids cool during hot summer camps

By Rachel McNeill - Anchor
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Humid summer days are something to be avoided if you have asthma.

HOUSTON - Our kids love being outside for all the summer sports, but there are definitely some things parents and coaches need to be on the lookout for to make sure our kids stay safe in the summer heat.

Sports camps like the ones at the University of Houston are buzzing with future star athletes.

But, the heat and humidity can sneak up on kids, putting them in danger of heat exhaustion, or even heat stroke.

"Either they'll get really flushed, you'll see them get really red or really sweaty or they'll go the other extreme where they go really white and stop sweating," said UH head softball coach Kyla Holas. "Either one of those are the things that are red flags for us and we send those kids in right away."

Snow cones help keep the kids cool, as do hourly water breaks.

"We have buckets of ice towels available for any kid who's getting hot," Holas explained. "Both of our locker rooms are open with air conditioning so they can come in if we see they're getting hot and take a break."

Texas Children's Hospital Emergency Center's Dr. Kay Leaming-VanZandt said parents can prep kids beforehand.

"Not only getting them to take in a great healthy breakfast, but also starting the hydration process with water or a sports drink," said Dr. Leaming-VanZandt. "Also, dressing them in light colored, loose fitting clothing would also be helpful."

Dr. Leaming-VanZandt also recommended talking to kids about the warning signs of heat-related illnesses.

"If they ever feel lightheaded or like they're going to pass out or they're not acting their normal self or seem confused, it's important that they get to a shady cool area and really start to cool them down," said Dr. Leaming-VanZandt.

Other danger signs include muscle cramping, headache, dizziness, nausea and vomiting.

Doctors said if you notice any of those symptoms in your young athlete, you should to seek medical attention immediately.

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