Summertime is a great time to get outdoors and enjoy the fresh air, but it's also important to remember to protect your little one from the sun. Looking for tips on how to keep Baby safe from the sun? You've come to the right place!
We'll share some important safety guidelines to follow when your baby is out in the sun. Plus, we'll give you a few ideas on how to make sure they have fun while staying safe and protected.
Why Can't Infants Use Sunscreen?
You might be wondering why you can't just slather on some sunscreen and call it a day. After all, isn’t sunscreen the best way to protect against UV rays?
The FDA and American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) recommend that infants under the age of six months old avoid using sunscreen. This is because their skin is much thinner than older children and adults, making them more susceptible to the harmful effects of the sun.
In addition, most sunscreens contain chemicals that haven't been tested for safety in babies. For these reasons, it's best to take other measures to protect your infant from the sun.
How Can I Protect My Baby From the Sun?
There are several things you can do to protect your baby from the sun:
Avoid direct sunlight whenever possible
The best way to protect your baby from the sun is to keep them out of direct sunlight altogether. If you must be in the sun, try to stay in the shade as much as possible.
Put them in loose-fitting, lightweight clothing
Covering up is one of the best ways to protect your baby from the sun. Dress them in loose-fitting, lightweight clothes that cover their arms and legs. A wide-brimmed hat will also help to keep their face and neck protected.
Use a stroller or carriage canopy
If you're going to be out walking or running errands with your baby, make sure to use a stroller or carriage with a canopy to protect them from the sun.
Use a baby carrier with a built-in sunshade
If you're using a baby carrier, look for one that has a built-in sunshade or is made from UV-protective fabric.
Use a portable playpen with a canopy
If you're heading to the park or beach with your baby, bring along a portable playpen with a canopy to provide them with a shady place to rest and play.
Be strategic about timing
Avoid the sun during the hottest part of the day, which is typically 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. If you must be out during these hours, make sure to take extra precautions to protect your baby from the sun.
Hydrate, hydrate, hydrate
Give your baby plenty of fluids to drink, even if they're not thirsty.
Signs of Heat Exhaustion in Babies
It's important to know the signs of heat exhaustion in babies so you can act quickly if they start to experience them. Symptoms of heat exhaustion in babies include:
• Crying more than usual
• Lethargy or tiredness
• Decreased appetite
• Muscle cramps
If your baby is showing any of these signs, it's important to move them to a cooler location and give them plenty of fluids to drink. If their symptoms don't improve within a few minutes, call 911 or take them to the nearest emergency room.
When Can You Start Using Sunscreen on Your Baby?
You can start using sunscreen on your baby once they’re six months old. Be sure to choose a sunscreen that is specifically designed for infants and has an SPF of at least 15. Apply the sunscreen to all exposed areas of skin, including their face, neck, hands, and feet.
Reapply the sunscreen every two hours, or more often if they're swimming or sweating. It's also a good idea to keep your baby out of direct sunlight as much as possible, even if they're using sunscreen.
What to Look for In Baby Sunscreen
When choosing a sunscreen for your baby, there are a few things you'll want to keep in mind:
• Choose a sunscreen that is specifically designed for infants and has an SPF of at least 15.
• Avoid sunscreens that contain chemicals such as benzophenone, camphor, PABA, or parabens. These haven't been tested for safety in babies and can be harmful if they're absorbed through the skin.
• Look for "broad spectrum" on the label. This means that the sunscreen will protect against both UVA and UVB rays.
Top Ideas for Fun in the Sun
Now that you know how to keep your baby safe in the sun, it's time to have some fun! Here are a few ideas:
Go for a swim
Water activities are a great way to beat the heat and have fun at the same time. Just be sure to never leave your baby alone near water, even for a second.
Have a picnic
Head to your local park and enjoy a meal in the great outdoors.
Visit a splash pad
A great way to cool off and have fun, splash pads are perfect for hot summer days. Just be sure to keep an eye on your little one so they don't wander off.
Now that you know how to keep your baby safe in the sun, it's time to get out there and enjoy the warm weather! Just remember to put sunscreen on every time they go outside, find shady areas for them to play in, and dress them in light-colored clothing. And most importantly, have fun!