August 12, 2019

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Children and Extreme Heat


Boy drinking waterExtreme heat can be dangerous and quickly turn into an emergency. Children’s bodies are different from adults’ bodies in ways that make them more likely to be affected by extreme heat during the summer. Children also rely on adults for their protection and may not recognize that extreme heat can be a threat to their health and safety. Infants and younger children may not be physically able to escape a dangerous situation, such as a locked, parked car. In the summer heat, a car can quickly become extremely hot inside. Here are some steps you can take to beat the heat.

  • Keep children cool. Dress infants and children in loose, lightweight, light-colored clothing.
  • Keep children hydrated. Make sure children drink plenty of fluids and stay away from drinks with too much sugar, such as sodas, fruit punch, lemonade, sweetened powdered drinks, sports drinks, and energy drinks.
  • If children are active, make sure they get adequate periods of rest.
  • Protect your children from excess sun exposure by following sunburn and sunscreen guidelines.
  • Learn the symptoms of heat-related illness and what to do if you or a loved one shows signs. In some cases, medical help is needed immediately.
  • Never leave kids in a parked car. Children who are left unattended in parked cars are at greater risk for heat stroke or even death. Leaving a window open is not enough. Temperatures within cars rise rapidly, even with the window open.

CDC has developed an activity book to prepare young children for extreme heat.



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Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
1600 Clifton Rd
Atlanta, GA 30333

Contact CDC-INFO
800-CDC-INFO (800-232-4636) TTY: 888-232-6348 


Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

1600 Clifton Rd   Atlanta, GA 30333   1-800-CDC-INFO (800-232-4636)   TTY: 888-232-6348
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