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What about a child who is always too hot?

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  • What about a child who is always too hot?

    Hi. Just a quick introduction first, since i have been reading for some time, but not yet responding. I have a child who is 13, with a diagnosis of "chronic health condition" (which means a combination of things: Tourette's; developmental coordination disorder; anxiety NOS; mixed expressive/receptive language disorder).

    For the most part, he copes pretty well at school, but then completely melts down when he gets home: not surprising, since he was worked so hard to hold it all together in order to seem 'normal' while he is there). I have found the forum posts on anger and tourette's to be really helpful. They certainly have helped me focus my attention on questions about the environment (trying to reduce explosions by attending to the structural environment, and the way it is contributing to his difficulties with maintaining an even balance)

    At this point, i have a question about the sensory processing side of things. My child is cold-seeking. He always complains of being too hot, and it is almost impossible to get him to wear a coat, even in the winter. For the most part, we have accepted this, and have allowed him to be 'underdressed', and indeed to go to school in a tshirt and shorts, even in the winter. However, we have moved, and are now in an area that has school uniforms. This is a real challenge for us. He arrives home completely drenched in sweat, and I know that this is making school worse than it would otherwise be. As a result, i have a brutal time each morning trying to get him up and out the door.

    I am very sure that the school is not going to allow him to come in shorts and a t-shirt. I am working at getting some form of accomodation to at least have him allowed to take off the jacket during the day (though there too, i am up against the edges of the anxiety disorder, as he is hypervigilante to any moves that would indicate he is 'different' or has a disability).

    But on a pragmatic level, i wonder if anyone else has a child with this challenge (or suffers it themselves)? Or, does anyone know of some shirt manufacturer that produces serioulsy cool (ie. cold?) shirts? I am perhaps only revealing my own shopping dysfunction here, since I really do not have a good sense of fabrics and hot/cold, andf have limited energy for task like shopping. Or maybe there are other strategies people can suggest to help him deal with the school uniform thing?

  • #2
    Re: What about a child who is always too hot?

    Two things: Look for references/articles on hyperhidrosis:

    Also, look for references on The Highly Sensitive Person:


    • #3
      Re: What about a child who is always too hot?

      Hi Glass Half Full,

      We're so happy that you are finding the Forum posts useful!

      The information I'm going to share with you now, is not Tourette related.
      It derives from information that was sent home for a school ski trip recently.
      I had always thought that cotton or silk was the best fabric for keeping hot bodies cool,
      and was a little shocked when the information from the school had the opposite advice.
      The recommendation from the school was for fabrics that "wick" the moisture away from the skin.

      I found this information on an article on "How to choose travel clothing."

      Materials that breathe well, wick moisture away from your skin and dry quickly will make your outdoor activities more comfortable. REI has a wide selection of such garments. Cotton, while OK for casual wear, is generally less suited for traveling than nylon or polyester. Here's a look at your most common fabric choices.
      Nylon and polyester: Most performance fabrics feature one of these synthetics. Some are name brands, such as Supplex® nylon, CoolMax® polyester or Capilene® polyester.
      • Pros: Breathable, lightweight, wicks away moisture and dries quickly, resists pilling and abrasion
      • Cons: Slightly less forgiving feel than cotton

      Tencel® and polynosic rayons: Tencel is a brand name for lyocell, a wood-pulp-based fiber that is part of the rayon family. Tencel and polynosic rayons offer similar drape and comfort, plus both offer machine wash/dry convenience. (Note: The other common type of rayon, known as viscose rayon, is typically dry clean only, so look at the care instructions to be sure.)
      • Pros: Luxuriously smooth feel, dries quickly and resists wrinkles; Tencel is made using an environmentally friendly process
      • Cons: Doesn't wick away moisture as well as polyester or nylon

      Silk: Luxuriously soft, it's most often used in underwear.
      • Pros: Lightweight, breathable, durable—ideal for warm climates
      • Cons: Less durable than other materials

      Cotton: This is commonly used for casual, all-around styles.
      • Pros: Soft, durable, breathable, versatile styling and easy care
      • Cons: Doesn't wick away moisture or dry as fast as nylon or polyester

      Cotton/polyester blend: Another common fabrication for casual wear, this blend seeks to offer both comfort and performance.
      • Pros: Feels soft against skin, breathable
      • Cons: Doesn't wick away moisture or dry as fast as 100% nylon or polyester

      In terms of his need to wear shorts outside, have you considered buying him work-out pants that have zippers across the thighs that allow you to remove the lower section and make them into shorts easily? They can be found in fabrics that can look like the casual pants he may need for a school uniform.

      These items are probably easiest found in a sports store and might be a bit pricey as a result. For example, if the uniform requires shirts with a collar you may be able to find something in a golf pro store.

      Good luck!
      Tina, Forum Moderator, TSFC Staff Liaison

      TSFC Homepage
      TSFC Membership


      • #4
        Re: What about a child who is always too hot?

        Welcome to the Forum Glass Half Full,

        He always complains of being too hot
        Has this symptom ever been linked to any medical disorder or medication he might be taking? Is he taking any medications at this time?
        TouretteLinks Forum


        • #5
          Re: What about a child who is always too hot?

          We have not yet gone the medication route with him.

          I don't discount it as a possibility, but he is so hostile to the prospect (or to acknolweding Tourette's or any of the other labels) that it is not currently a real option.

          I do think it (the 'too hot' thing) is linked pretty closely to the diagnosis: he has very real sensory issues, hypotonic muscules, and needs very deep pressure in order to feel things (ie. has always needed to be hugged/hugs at a level that would be painful for anyone else). He needs his room very cold at night in order to be able to sleep, and can happily lay down in snow with no coat. It is only recently that i have come to understand how other problems are linked to this: he is very unhappy at school, and I suspect he would be finding it much easier to integrate if so much of his emergy wasn't being focused into surviving the heat. In the long run, we will move to another city where he will NOT have to wear a school uniform. In the short run, we are a bit stuck. But i am increasingly thinking that some of the 'adjustments' he is having to make (and the many many explosions we have at home about him going to school and about the school uniform) are not about 'the move', but are about a very serious discomfort in his body because he is simply too hot wearing layers of clothes he didn't have to before.


          • #6
            Re: What about a child who is always too hot?

            What's not clear to me from your comments is whether your son has had a full medical work-up including blood tests to rule out a possible physical disorder that is causing him to feel cold. If it were thyroid dysfunction, for example, it could be addressed by his doctor.

            acknolweding Tourette's or any of the other labels
            I believe your son needs some counseling so his thinking can be re-oriented to understand that accepting the reality of a diagnosis is part of being a responsible and mature person. I'm concerned about his concerns about so-called labels.

            How is the family support system for your son, and how do family members, friends and school system respond to and react to his Tourette activity?

            Are you aware of a local Tourette support group close to your community where you and your son can meet others dealing with Tourette and share experiences?
            TouretteLinks Forum