Summertime is here and your little ones are sure to want to explore the great outdoors! But before you head outside with your bundle of joy, it’s important to understand the basics of sun safety. But when it comes to wearing sunscreen and other protective clothing, babies can be a bit tricky as, under 6 months, they can't wear regular sunscreen. So, before you take your baby out into the sun, check out this guide to make sure you know what to do!
How To Dress Your Baby For The Sun
The best way to protect your little one from the sun is by dressing them in lightweight, loose-fitting clothing that covers as much skin as possible. Look for clothes made of tightly woven fabrics or cotton material, as these provide more protection than synthetic materials like polyester.
Additionally, be sure to bring along a wide-brimmed hat and sunglasses (yes, even for babies!) when spending time outdoors. Just make sure that they fit snugly around baby's face so they don't fall off if baby is fussy!
When And Where Is It Safe To Take Your Baby Outside?
Babies under six months old should be kept out of direct sunlight altogether; instead bring them outdoors during early morning or late afternoon hours when the sun isn't at its strongest.
When you do take baby out into the sunshine, apply sunscreen before applying insect repellant (insect repellant can cause irritation when applied directly onto baby's skin).
If possible find an area with some shade for extra protection—think trees, umbrellas and gazebos—so that you can avoid constantly reapplying sunscreen throughout the day.
Why can't babies under 6 months wear chemical sunscreen?
Chemical sunscreens work by absorption and can potentially be toxic if ingested. Physical sunscreens such as zinc oxide and titanium dioxide sit on the surface of the skin and deflect UV radiation. For this reason, physical sunscreens are a better choice for babies under 6 months old.
What sunscreens are suitable for babies under 6 months?
There are a few sunscreens that are suitable for babies under 6 months old. Mineral-based sunscreens such as zinc oxide and titanium dioxide are good options, as they sit on the surface of the skin and deflect UV radiation. Sunscreens that contain nanoparticles should be avoided, as these can be absorbed into the skin and may be toxic if ingested. Be sure to avoid sunscreens that contain oxybenzone and octinoxate, as these chemicals may be absorbed into the skin and can disrupt hormones.
For more information on the best sunscreens for babies as well as my top picks, check out my blog:
What To Do If Your Baby Gets Too Much Sun Exposure?
If you've spent too long in the sun without adequate protection and noticed redness on your child's skin, try dabbing some cool water on it to help soothe any irritation. If necessary seek medical attention immediately and be sure to keep an eye out for signs of dehydration such as excessive fussiness or lethargy, which could be a sign that your child needs additional fluids and rest.
How To Protect Your Baby From UV Radiation?
When it comes to protecting against UV radiation there are two things you can do: stay in the shade when possible and use sunscreen liberally! Be sure to pick up a sunscreen specifically designed for babies with an SPF of at least 50; look for products labeled "broad spectrum" which means they offer protection from both UVA and UVB rays.
Apply sunscreen 15 minutes before going outside and reapply every two hours (or immediately after swimming/sweating).
Tips For Choosing A Sunscreen That's Safe For Babies
There are many types of sunscreens available on the market today but not all are safe for babies' delicate skin. Avoid products containing oxybenzone or parabens—these ingredients can irritate sensitive skin—and opt instead for mineral-based formulas containing zinc oxide or titanium dioxide since these natural minerals reflect away harmful UV rays without irritating baby's skin.
It may seem overwhelming trying to keep up with all of your baby's needs but with a few simple steps you can ensure their safety in the sunshine this summer!
By following these tips on how to dress them appropriately, where and when it's safe to take them outside, what do if they get too much sun exposure, how to protect them from UV radiation and choosing a safe sunscreen product – you'll have peace of mind knowing that your little one is well protected!
Have fun this summer!