BURLINGTON, Ky. - Summer Camp! It's a time kids look forward to all year. They're so happy and YMCA Camp Ernst nurse Kate Ryan says staying hydrated during these hot sunny days helps to keep it that way.
"When you're dehydrated you're unhappy," Ryan said. "You don't feel good. The kids get sick to their stomach. They get overheated much more easily with their activities. And they get headaches and just feel rotten. So we try really hard to keep them hydrated all through the day. It's really important to not just gulp down water when you get a second but to keep water in your body all day long throughout the whole day."
YMCA Camp Ernst Director Eli Cochran says she's actually not as worried about the younger children.
"I think sometimes older kids think they don't need to be told so they would be the ones that we'd be more worried about 'cause the younger kids - the counselors are really on it," said Cochran.
Ryan says they rarely see the extreme cases of heat exhaustion at camp, but she tells me about the warning signs.
"What you're first going to see is that the kids are going to get flushed," said Ryan. "They're going to look hot. What's really scary is when they stop looking hot. We try to get to the kids really fast while they're still sweaty and flushed and feeling still rotten. It's when they stop sweating and they get pale - that's when you really need to start worrying. We hope to get to the kids long before that stage. We get to them when they're still flushed and looking over heated."
To further prevent heat exhaustion and dehydration, a local doctor told 9 News that kids should take frequent breaks when they're exerting themselves in the heat, avoid soda or any drinks with caffeine in them and wear loose fitting clothing made of cotton that breathes.
Ryan tells me about another step she takes during hot days.
"We do get to the point where we restrict activity so that we'll do something quiet in the shade or get in water to do an activity rather than doing activities during the heat of the day," said Ryan.
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