Harmattan: Physician urges adherence to precautions

Parents have been advised to take precautions and protect their children from the harsh harmattan weather.

An Osun-based physician, Dr Olagunju Bamidele gave this advise in a chat with newsmen on Monday in Osogbo.

Olagunju, who noted that the harmattan is always accompanied by dust, particles, haze and dry cold stated that there was the need for parents and nursing mothers to ensure that their children were not unnecessarily exposed to the cold.

He also advised parents to keep their children indoors early in the morning and from late evenings and not to allow them to go near or play with water at anytime.

“Parents should bathe their children with warm water and make sure they put in thick clothing. Children under the age of 5 are mostly susceptible to infections at this critical period because of the weather.

“At this time, the weather is harsh and anybody can see that there is need for even adults to take precautions. Catarrh, Pneumonia and other infections are rife and children are more prone to catch these infections than adults.

“They should also let their children eat food when it is warm and should discourage drinking cold water.

“For those who will be going for night religious programmes because of the season, they should ensure their children and even themselves are properly clothed in thick and warm clothing.”

Olagunju also stated that NIMET forecast should have been enough warning signals to expect a harsh harmattan towards the end of the year.

“NIMET predicted harsh rainfall conditions and we all saw what happened, the dry weather would not be different. We just have to abide by the weather forecasts and give ourselves a better life.

“We discovered that in these periods, uncommon diseases and infections are rife. This is because many parents fail to observe precautions and at the end of the day, they end up spending more for treatments,” he added.