Aug 9, 2012
Post By: Children's Health
Remind your athlete to stay hydrated.
Sprints. Laps. Marching band drill-downs. These are a few activities that your football players, cheerleaders, marching band players and other fall athletes are concentrating on as they prepare for fall sports. In August. Outside. Under the boiling hot sun. One thing they’re probably not concentrating on? Hydration. Most teenagers prioritize it about as much as cleaning their rooms. But as a parent, you’re concerned by the stories about athletes collapsing on the field from dehydration and heat stroke and want to make sure your athlete takes precautions to avoid this from happening. Dr. Shane Miller, sports medicine specialist with the Sports Medicine program at Children’s recently talked to a group of middle school football players about health issues and sports. Following is his advice.
Sports drinks, juices and even sodas do provide some degree of hydration. Still, water is generally best because it lacks the calories and additives found in other drinks. However, if you expect to exercise for an hour or longer, sports drinks are better because they replace electrolytes that are lost as an athlete sweats.
Even mild dehydration can affect an athlete's performance and cause fatigue. Here are some signs of moderate or severe dehydration. Make sure you — and your child’s coach — are aware of them. Your children should also recognize these in case they, or a teammate, become overheated.
If your young athlete notices any of these signs, he should rest and drink water or sports drinks. If the symptoms persist, take your child to a doctor. Disorientation, inability to drink or pale skin may mean your child has a serious condition that should be treated as a medical emergency. Please share this information with your athlete!
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