Protect Your Kids From The Summer Heat

Heat exhaustion is a more severe heat illness that can happen when someone in a hot climate or environment hasn't been drinking enough liquids.

Video Transcript

- Reminder, the heat can be dangerous, especially for young children. Just yesterday MedStar had three heat-related calls, including one pediatric patient. There are some easy precautions you can take to make sure your kids stay safe. As the Texas heat cranks up, experts say parents need to stay vigilant. We spoke with Cinthia Vega, an injury prevention specialist with Children's Health. She says one of the biggest dangers, hot cars.

CINTHIA VEGA: Texas does lead the nation on children that are in hot cars with 134 so-- and we're one of the hottest states as well.

- She says you have to [? ACT ?] to prevent these deaths. A, avoid leaving a child alone.

CINTHIA VEGA: I mean, you should never leave a child alone in the car, not even for a second. Sometimes those quick errands to the store can turn into four, five, six minutes and that can become deadly for children.

- C, create reminders. Put your phone or purse in the backseat. And T, take action if you see a child left alone in a vehicle. Call 911 immediately.

CINTHIA VEGA: Within a time less-- lapse of 10 minutes, the car can heat up up to 20 degrees higher than the actual temperature outside.

- As for letting the kids play outside--

CINTHIA VEGA: Bring them to a shaded area, take breaks. Obviously, don't forget your sunscreen. Hydration is really important, especially if you're going to be out-- if you're going to be out for a lot of time, then take the hydration seriously as well.

- And watch out for warning signs of a heat-related illness.

CINTHIA VEGA: I know kids will become dizzy, disoriented. There-- they will have hot, dry skin, normally you won't see any sweating, they may lose consciousness. So you won't want to look for those symptoms.

- And let's talk a little bit about the difference between heat stroke and heat exhaustion. Heat exhaustion. You may notice a child sweating with cold, clammy skin. They may be tired or dizzy. Get them to a cool place, loosen their clothing, and get them some water to sip on. Heat stroke. Look out for hot, dry, or damp skin, a strong, fast, pulse, dizziness, confusion, even fainting. And by the way, heat stroke is a medical emergency. In this case, you need to call 911.