Signs of Dehydration and Heat Exhaustion in Children {in Arizona}


First of all, I just have to get something off of my chest…

it’s WICKED hot out there ladies!!!

I don’t care what other people may say – it feels terrible when I walk out my front door each and every morning.  My daily self-pep talk of  “Remember: You’ll have nearly 8 months of great weather” just isn’t cutting it anymore.

The truth is, other than the occasional trip to California or a day trip to Flagstaff, there’s no escaping this heat, so we just have to hunker down and figure out how to survive for another couple months.

And by survive I really actually mean survive.  The reality is this heat can be dangerous for our little ones.

Case in point…

Just last month Joy and I scheduled a morning play date for Ms. Nora and Ms. Reagan (and the babies and moms of course).  We planned to have the girls play outside in the backyard for an hour or so.  We set up the baby pool and the sprinklers and gave them plenty of snacks and water to drink.

About an hour or so into their playtime it was obvious that something was bothering Nora.  I honestly just thought it was getting close to nap time so she was a little sad. After 30 minutes or so passed it was obvious that she was acting very unlike herself.  I quickly packed up our things and headed home trying to determine what was wrong with Nora. My little mommy brain was spinning.

Thankfully my husband had already planned to come home for lunch and met us as we pulled in.  He helped carry Nora inside and he too noticed that there was something very different about Nora – she was very lethargic/fatigued (which is quite unusual for our spirited daughter), had obvious muscle weakness, had a temperature and eventually tried to vomit.  After searching Dr. Google, we quickly realized that more than likely she was dehydrated and had a case of heat exhaustion.

We decided to take her to the ER as her symptoms had been going on for a couple hours.  Nora was quickly admitted and eventually given an IV to replenish the lack of fluids in her little body.  After a little TLC from the wonderful nurses (and some fluid of course), Nora was back to herself in no time.  She probably won’t even remember her first ER visit (although you can be sure her mommy and daddy will).

All that being said I thought it would be useful for all of you mama readers to know what the dehydration/heat exhaustion signs are in children.  It can be a very frightening thing to experience and so it’s helpful to know what you’re looking for.

Signs of Dehydration and Heat Exhaustion in Children

  • Muscle cramps/weakness
  • Pale, Moist Skin
  • Fever over 102 degrees
  • Nausea
  • Vomiting
  • Diarrhea
  • Headache
  • Fatigue 
  • Weakness 
First Aid Measures for above symptoms:
  • Move to a cool place and rest
  • Give cool sports drinks containing salt and sugar such as Gatorade
  • If no improvement or unable to take fluids, call your adolescent’s physician or take your child to an emergency department immediately. IV (intravenous) fluids may be needed.
Above information taken from The Children’s Hospital website.

Moral of the Story – Stay safe in this heat ladies (and kiddos)!



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