Since it’s summer and warm in most parts of the country, it’s important to remind parents that just because it isn’t hot, doesn’t mean the sun can’t damage your baby’s skin. Even when it’s cool (even in the winter!), the sun can burn a skin. Babies are especially sensitive. Sunburns early in life can increase one’s chance of having skin cancer. Use these tips to protect your baby’s skin for the summer sun.
1. Add a shade to your devices.
Pick up a versatile baby wrap to shade baby from the sun while you’re out. You will want something you can hang over the carrier, the stroller, or over your shoulder. Use a removable mesh shield to keep direct sunlight off your child while she’s sitting in the car.
2. Use hats and sunglasses.
Put a wide-brimmed hat with flaps for the neck and ears on your baby when you’re in direct sunlight. If your baby will tolerate it, use a hate that completely shades the face. Offer sunglasses, though your baby might take them off often, but eventually he/she will learn how useful they can be.
3. Use lots of sunscreen.
Check your sunscreen bottle for the words “broad spectrum.” That’s what you want. Use at least SPF 15. Apply the lotion a half an hour before spending time in the sun and reapply ever two hours. If you take baby into the water, reapply immediately after. Make sure to hit the often-forgotten spots like the tops of the ears, the nose, and the tops of hands and feet. Check the lotion’s expiration date before applying – they can go bad.
4. Dress appropriately.
Even if it’s hot, it’s best to be covered against the sun’s rays. Use light colored clothing because it reflects the sun rays to cover your baby’s arms and legs. The fabrics should have a tight weave (you can determine by holding them up to the light – if much comes through, it’s too loose). Keep a special set of clothing in the car in case you get caught in the sun.
5. Avoid the sun all together.
During the first few (maybe six) months of life, you shouldn’t be taking baby out into the sun at all. The rays are far too harsh for brand new skin, even with sunscreen. If you must go outside, do whatever you can to keep your trips short – like the walk from your home to the car. Schedule your activities and errands for the mornings or evens when the light is mitigated.
Guest Blog by Laura Gravett, Inventor of PunkinWrap
Laura, a mom of two, is the inventor of PunkinWrap, a multi-use car seat cover and baby wrap. PunkinWrap is the only wrap purposely designed to multi-task as a blanket, car seat cover, sunshade, changing pad, tummy time mat, and nursing cover. The 7-in-one baby solution can be placed over baby while nursing, over the car seat, or over the stroller to keep baby protected from the sun at all times. The wrap is lightweight and breathable so baby is always comfy. Plus, it also gives baby privacy while sleeping and protects him from the other elements like rain and wind.
More so, Laura is a former nanny with a degree in psychology who formerly worked at Yale University doing research. As an Atlanta native and currently residing in the best suburb of Atlanta: Roswell, Laura and her husband love their community. Laura volunteers on various committees in their city to help give back in any way she can. Laura and her husband spent several years taking care of rescue dogs – transport, intakes, fostering, etc. and had to step away a bit once they had their first child. The Gravetts now have two children (girls ages 3 and 10 months) and three rescue dogs.
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