Hooray! Summer is here!
Now is the time for you and your baby to get outside and enjoy some fun in the sun. Whether it’s a stroll in the park or a day at the beach, here are some summer sun safety tips to keep your baby protected while having fun.
Avoid the Mid-day Sun
The sun is hottest, and its rays are strongest, during the middle of the day. Children should stay inside or in the shade between 11:00 am and 3:00 pm to minimize exposure. Be extremely careful at the beach because the sun’s rays reflect off the water, increasing the chance for sunburn. Since babies can’t tell you if they are too hot, check by placing your hand across your baby’s back underneath the clothes, or on the back of the neck. Skin should feel warm, but not hot. If baby feels hot, move to a cooler place or inside, and hydrate as needed.
Bright sun, bright clothing
As a general rule, bright or colored clothing works better to protect baby from the harmful rays of the sun that white clothing. Blues, reds, greens, and yellows (including socks) offer more protection than pale colors. Choose light, breathable cotton clothing for summer. Keeping baby covered and applying sunscreen are your best defenses against the sun.
Sunscreens and sunblocks
A baby’s skin is soft, sensitive and offers no protection from the sun. Sunblocks and sunscreens with zinc oxide or titanium dioxide won’t overwhelm the baby since these elements are used to sometimes treat burns, according to WebMD. Dermatologists recommend an SPF of 15 or higher made especially for kids to block UVA and UVB rays. Apply approximately 15 minutes before going outside (even on cloudy days), and be sure to reapply as indicated on the bottle.
If you’re going to be at a place where there is no shade, be sure to pack yours!
- A big beach umbrella or pop-up tent
- A stroller with a canopy
- Wide-brimmed hats (not baseball caps) that protect face, scalp, ears and neck
- Wraparound UV protection sunglasses.
- Even placing a light-weight blanket over the stroller or car seat during travel or play can provide shade.
Good hydration is essential
While breastfeeding usually provides thirst-quenching, nutritious milk for your baby, those who are not breastfeeding may need to supplement bottle-feedings with cooled sterile water. In both instances, give shorter feedings more frequently to keep baby hydrated.
On days when it’s too hot to head for the beach, why not bring the beach to your baby with this adorable soft beach pail and shovel. It comes with a host of beach buddies that squeak, crinkle, rattle and jingle with excitement during play. To keep the summer fun going all year long, why not try this Hang-10 Surfer Stool? It’s a great way for toddlers to catch a wave of excitement as they stand to reach the sink or shelf in their room.