My 28 month old gets really REALLY cold when I take her swimming - shivering, blue lips, etc. It's particularly a problem when the water is warmer than the air. She loves swimming, but I want to be sure to steer clear of hypothermia. Can anyone recommend a resource with guidelines for appropriate water and air temperatures for toddlers? Is there truly a risk of hypothermia for a toddler in an 85 degree body of water on a 90+ degree day?
My ds would get really really cold even in warm water when he was younger, he has always been a tiny, skinny little guy so I think that was part of it. I got him a wetsuit and that helped a lot. I make him get out when he looks uncomfortable, even if he is still having fun. He can go back in once he warms up!
My kids go swimming in water temps in the upper 60's with air temps in the mid-70's without any problems. They may be cold when they get out, but they would rather swim than not. Granted, they are older than toddler age, so that might make a difference. I grew up in the NE, and all summer we would swim in the ocean, and frequently the temps would be around that, and we were fine.
Is there truly a risk of hypothermia for a toddler in an 85 degree body of water on a 90+ degree day?
I would think not...I can't imagine anyone getting hypothermia when it's 90+ degrees out.
I don't know of any guidelines but I think blue and shivering is a long way from hypothermia. I would warm her up before going back in however.
My toddler gets cold. If she starts shivering or looking blue I take her out and take off her swimsuit and wrap her in two towels. Then I sit with her in the sun and she soon warms up. I don't take them swimming as often as I would otherwise though, simply because I'm not then in the water with my 5 year old and I can't easily get to him. He wears a life jacket so it's not so much a safety things as a behavioural thing. I would get her a wet suit but summers are so short where we live it doesn't seem worth the expense. I might still do so when she goes to swimming lessons however if she has the same trouble at the indoor pool.
Yeah, I wouldn't have thought of hypothermia at all until I started googling and found some stuff that suggested it was a possibility. For instance, major shivering and lips turning blue are listed as signs of moderate hypothermia on Wikipedia. And this: "Water at a temperature of 26 °C (79 °F) will, after prolonged exposure, lead to hypothermia." Toddlers lose heat more rapidly than adults, so....then all of a sudden I got worried that the chill at the beach is a little more serious than I thought. I'm prone to worrying about stuff like this, so I'm glad to hear some grounded viewpoints. We'll bring a few more towels to the beach from now on, just to be on the safe side.