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Winter dressing tips for teens


A hat should be worn to protect
against heat loss
Photo: AP/Patrick Reddy

Parents may think that they’ve already passed the stage of having to dress their child. Certainly this was one of the milestones that was celebrated by the family before age eight, along with tying shoes and memorizing multiplication tables. However, no matter how tall or strong our teens become, there is still room for a little parental input. After all, science shows that parents are the strongest influence in a teen’s life, despite common acceptance of the contrary. When it is cold and blustery outside, a parent should recommend layers for their teens.

When the temperature drops below freezing, it is necessary to wear a warm cotton layer close to the body, also known as thermal underwear. This is especially important if a teen girl is wearing a skirt or shorts. Warm cotton leggings should be worn underneath the skirt or shorts. However, both genders should wear thermal bottoms and tops. If the teen is wearing a bulky sweater as an outer layer, then a lighter cotton t-shirt or sleeveless t-shirt can be worn.

The next layer is the clothes that will be shown to the outside world. Teens often want to remain fashionable and current trends may require lighter fabrics or low necklines or a simple t-shirt and no coat at all. If it is very important to your teen to follow fashion trends, then allow the article of clothing that is weather inappropriate, but encourage strongly that the article be worn either over or under a sweater or turtleneck. Covering the neck during cold weather can do wonders to prevent cold and flu germs from entering the respiratory system. A scarf worn with the coat and outer layer can also accomplish protection of the throat. This layer of clothing should be layered so teen can remove clothing if inside heat becomes too intense.

The last layer is the outer layer and should include a coat of good quality that has a hood and is waterproof. It is of no use to wear a coat that is made out of absorbent natural fibers such as wool or cotton, if the weather is icy or wet. Along with the scarf already mentioned, a teen needs to wear a hat. 60% of human body heat is lost through the top of the head. This heat loss can leave your child susceptible to colds and flu and diminish school attendance. Be cautious, be aware, but most of all, be covered during winter weather. Check out Nashville's Winter Weather report from News Channel 5.


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