Robert R. Cawley, D.O.
Dover, NH 03802
Winter, with all of its beauty, can be treacherous too. Here are some helpful tips to keep your children safe while you enjoy winter weather activities in the Seacoast.
Dress warm – layers are best. Keep children's hands, feet and heads covered to prevent hypothermia. Younger children should take breaks to come inside to get warm.
When placing your infant or child in a car seat during cold weather, make sure to remove their jacket or coat first. The coat may compress during an accident and loosen the harness, which puts your child at greater risk for injury. Instead, lay the coat/jacket over your child like a blanket after they are secured in the car seat.
Make sure your child wears a well-fitting helmet when they are playing hockey, ice skating, skiing, or snowboarding. (For information on which helmet is best for a specific activity, go to www.cpsc.org)
Young children should never go down a hill alone on a sled. Helmets should be worn by children under 12 years old. Always sled feet first or sitting up.
Children under 6 years old should never ride on snowmobiles. The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends that children under 16 years old not operate snowmobiles. All operators should wear goggles and a helmet approved for motorize vehicles.
Hydration and Sunscreen
Even during the winter children can get sunburned and dehydrated. Remind them to drink fluids and cover exposed skin with sunscreen before heading for outdoor fun.
Warn your children to stay away from snowplows and snow blowers and be careful crossing roads – snow banks make it extra hard for drivers to see children.
Your home should have a carbon monoxide detector on every level, especially outside bedrooms. Place them at least 15 feet away from fuel-burning appliances, such as wood/pellet stoves and furnaces, and test them regularly. Never leave a vehicle in a closed garage with the engine running. Never run a generator in any enclosed space.
It’s natural to want your infant’s crib to be cozy and warm, but extra blankets and soft bedding may block an infant’s airway. Always keep your infant on a firm mattress and dress them in a sleep sack or footed pajamas.
Wentworth-Douglass Hospital is here for you should injuries or illnesses occur. From Wentworth Health Partners primary care, specialty care and prompt care walk-in services to Wentworth-Douglass Express Care and the Emergency Department (certified as a level III pediatric trauma center), our experts are here to care for you when you need it most.
*Safety tips from SafeKids Worldwide: a global organization dedicated to preventing injuries in children. For more information: www.safekids.org.
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