By Stephanie Levine, DO, FAAP, Member of the Board of Directors at Keeping Babies Safe.
How do you keep your baby safe during the warm and sunny months?
First and foremost, we all need to be protected from the sun. Most parents and grandparents believe they cannot use sunscreen on babies, which is simply not true. I do recommend keeping babies in the shade and well covered when possible. If there is some sun exposure, it’s advisable to use any sunscreen with an SPF of 30 or 45, PABA free, which protects against both UVA and UVB rays. Apply a small amount to baby’s skin first to make sure there is no reaction, as babies have very sensitive skin.
It can be fun for parents and grandparents to enjoy playing in the sand and dipping babies in the pool, or ocean. When the fun is done, a nice warm bath is recommended to wipe off any sunscreen, sand, chlorine, and/or salt.
Lastly, in warm weather, it is important to keep babies well hydrated and dressed appropriately. If it is 90 degrees and you are sweating, your baby is hot as well. Parents/grandparents often question what the appropriate temperature in the house should be as well. This is a personal decision. If you have the thermostat set at 68 degrees and you are wearing a sweatshirt in the house, perhaps the baby needs another layer too.
Summertime can be fun for you and your baby. Enjoy!
For other helpful information and more on crib safety and safe sleep environments, visit www.keepingbabiessafe.org.