Summer time is the perfect time for families to get out of the house and breath the fresh air, go to the beach or park and make special memories together. We all look forward to picnics, barbeques, attending sports events, swimming lessons and outdoor gatherings of all kinds in the beautiful warm weather.
If you have a new little one in your family it is crucial that you plan ahead and take some simple precautions before heading out into the wonderful sunshine. The first recommendation that pediatricians give is to cover up your baby as much as possible without overheating him.
A cute sunhat will go a long way in protecting your baby from the harmful affects of the sun. There are many cute hats to choose from now because all moms agree that it is important to cover up that tender scalp. If you start putting a hat on baby the first time you go out, he or she will get used to it and come to expect a hat for going “bye-bye”.
A long sleeve but light-weight shirt is also a good idea but we know that with all the adorable short sets and cute frilly tank tops it may be hard to cover them up with a long sleeve shirt and long pants! So the next option is to provide your own shade if unable to be under a tree or awning. Sun umbrellas can be pitched anywhere or even connected to a stroller or playpen to be a strong barrier between your baby and the sunshine. If an umbrella is not available you can stretch a blanket out or even a nursing cover can be used for a sunshade when in a pinch.
The next line of defense is an effective sunscreen on your baby’s brand new skin. This can be a confusing and overwhelming responsibility, especially when you stand in the store and see the hundreds of brands and options in front of you. How in the world do you know which one is really safe and which ones are not being truthful on the label.
Some Tips For Choosing Sunscreen For Baby
Do not assume that a sunscreen that has “Kids” or “Baby” on the label is safe. They may protect from sunburn but not from UVA penetration that promotes aging and cancer. In fact according to recent studies there are very many “Kid” sunscreens on the shelves today that do not fully protect at all!
Sprays & powders
SPF above 50+
LOOK FOR :
PABA Free to prevent skin irritation
At least 15 SPF (Sun Protective Factor)
(Sunscreens with these ingredients begin to protect instantly, others must be applied at least thirty minutes before sun exposure.)
It is also important to check expiration dates on sunscreen; they do lose their power over time.
We have found a wonderful website that will list the actual brands that are good and bad. It has a new up to date list for this summer’s wise mothers to check before going to the store for their summer supplies. Just go to: www.cosmeticsdatabase.org to help you do your best to give your whole family a fun and carefree summer vacation!
Be sure that baby gets at least 15 minutes of sunshine per day before putting the sunscreen on ( see www.vitamindcouncil.org for more details ) so that baby gets a good dose of Vitamin D and if baby cannot get sun, a liquid Vitamin D is crucial for keeping baby happy and healthy, especially during the winter months when sun is not so available.