Causes of Hypothermia in Children

Causes of Hypothermia in Children

Children are more prone to hypothermia than adults because their bodies produce less heat. As a result, they cannot maintain the normal body temperature as well as adults do.

Children’s bodies stay warm by burning energy in order to produce heat especially through shivering, but when children get cold this process does not work properly and hypothermia sets in quickly.

The causes for hypothermia can be classified into two categories:

1) Exogenous causes:- Those that come from outside the body

2) Endogenous causes:-Those that originate inside the body

Exogenous Causes of Hypothermia can be grouped under the following heads:

Environmental exposure (cold weather): Exposure to the cold is one of the most common causes of hypothermia.

People who live in areas where the temperatures are very low may be at risk of hypothermia. An example would be people living in northern Canada or Siberia, where winter temperatures can fall to 40 degrees below zero Fahrenheit (40 degrees C).

Falling into cold water:

People who fall into cold water become victims of hypothermia within minutes. Swimming pools that haven’t been heated sufficiently over the winter months, lakes, and rivers all pose a threat for drownings by hypothermia.

Unprotected exposure to wet conditions:- Climbing mountains on rainy days leads to wet clothes due to perspiration. If these clothes stay wet for long periods of time they will lead to hypothermia. These clothes can freeze once you start climbing up higher altitudes.

Endogenous causes of hypothermia:

Disease (such as heart disease, Parkinson’s disease) Loss of body fat (obesity) Alcoholism Drugs- some drugs lower the body temperature so they can cause problems in cold weather.

Dehydration Certain medications:

anticholinergic medications, sedatives, and some antihistamines may suppress shivering which leaves you more vulnerable to hypothermia. Elderly patients are very sensitive to changes in the weather because their bodies cannot adjust quickly or effectively to changes in temperature.

They will often wear light clothing even on days that are quite cold. This is particularly dangerous for those living alone who do not have anyone checking up on them on a regular. The elderly also tend to have slower reactions and impaired mobility.

causes of hypothermia in newborns:

Hypothermia is a condition where the body temperature drops below normal.

A baby can have hypothermia if their birth was delayed or complicated, for example by getting stuck during birth. This means that they weren’t able to get as much of your warm, early labor contractions as they should have done. If this happens it is called secondary hypothermia.

Babies are more likely to have secondary hypothermia if they are born at home. Sometimes a baby’s position in the womb might mean that they can’t get enough food from their mother even before they are born – this too can cause them to become cold after delivery before they can regulate their own body temperature (this kind of hyposmia is called primary hypothermia).

Other causes of hypothermia in newborns include:

having a low birth weight (less than 2.5 kilograms)

being born after longer pregnancies (over 41 weeks)

having breathing problems, like respiratory distress syndrome (RDS), at birth, which is often associated with prematurity,

intrauterine growth restriction (IUGR) or having an infection during pregnancy. Severe jaundice at birth can also lead to the baby becoming hypoglycaemic and hypothermic.

secondary hypothermia – when a baby doesn’t get enough movement from you early in labor because the placenta isn’t working properly. The lack of a contract means that your baby doesn’t get as much energy and warmth from your contractions.

Primary hypothermia:

when a baby has a poor start to life due to problems in the uterus or birth canal which means that they don’t get enough oxygen and nutrients, or they can’t regulate their own body temperature well enough after birth.

This means that they are likely to become cold straight after delivery before they can regulate their own body temperature properly (this kind of hyposmia is called primary hypothermia)

secondary hypothermia:

when a baby doesn’t get enough movement from you early in labor because the placenta isn’t working properly. The lack of a contract means that your baby doesn’t get as much energy and warmth from your contractions.

primary hypothermia :

when a baby has a poor start to life due to problems in the uterus or birth canal which means that they don’t get enough oxygen and nutrients, or they can’t regulate their own body temperature well enough after birth. This means that they are likely to become cold straight after delivery before they can regulate their own body temperature properly (this kind of hyposmia is called primary hypothermia).

Hypothermia signs and symptoms:

Your baby may become cold because they haven’t received enough movement from you early in labor (a problem with the placenta). A baby who becomes cold straight after birth is called primary hypothermia; one who becomes cold later on is secondary hypothermia.

signs of primary neonatal hypothermia

– Heart rate more than 100 beats per minute

– Blue coloration of fingers, toes, or earlobes

– Low energy or lethargy

signs of secondary neonatal hypothermia:

– Pale skin with a bluish tinge to the skin

– Cold to touch

– Very low energy

if your baby shows any of these signs after birth you should seek medical attention. Sometimes it can be difficult for parents to tell if their baby has become very cold straight after delivery before they can regulate their own body temperature properly; this is called primary hypothermia.

If babies show signs like these they need immediate medical attention in order to prevent complications like brain injury or even death. Signs that indicate that a baby is in danger of death due to hypothermia include.

– Being cold to touch

– Breathing problems

– Poor feeding or sucking

– Becoming very floppy (being unable to move well)

Hypothermic babies are at risk of developing severe neurological problems like cerebral palsy and delayed brain development if they aren’t treated quickly. If your newborn baby shows signs of hypothermia, you will need medical treatment straight away; but don’t panic. Most cases can be easily treated with no long-term complications! These days all women who give birth will have their placenta tested.

This means that it is normally possible for doctors to tell whether a baby has become cold because there was a problem with the placenta. Unfortunately, the mother’s body doesn’t produce enough milk for most babies until they are about three or four days old, so keeping your baby warm is important – especially in the first few hours.

However, having lots of skin-to-skin contact with you can help keep them warm straight after birth even without it being wrapped up inside clothes.

hypothermia without cold exposure:

In some cases, babies don’t become cold because they have been in a hot environment. There is a condition called “newborn infant encephalopathy” whereby the baby’s brain isn’t able to function properly and it causes them to go into a coma or sleep very deeply. Babies with this condition need immediate medical attention.

Signs of hypothermia include:

– Being very floppy (not being able to move well)

– Breathing problems

– Skin that could turn blue when you press on it (this may be temporary but check with your hospital anyway).

Hypothermic babies are at risk of developing severe neurological problems like cerebral palsy and delayed brain development if they aren’t treated quickly. If your newborn baby shows signs of hypothermia, you will need medical treatment straight away; but don’t panic. Most cases can be easily treated with no long-term complications! These days all women who give birth will have their placenta tested.

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