Protecting Baby’s Sensitive Skin In Summer

The much-anticipated summer season is here! And with it, all the questions and concerns about how to protect baby’s sensitive skin in the heat and sunshine.

Before you venture outside with your infant to the pool, park, errands, and everywhere in between, keep these products and ideas handy.

Avoid Activities During Peak Sun Hours

Working around baby’s nap schedule, feedings, diaper changes, and older siblings’ and parents’ needs doesn’t always make it easy or even possible, but when you can, schedule outdoor time, play dates, and pool visits in the morning and late afternoon when the sun rays are a little less direct, and when possible, select locations that offer shade and indoor respite areas. According to the Food and Drug Administration, “The FDA and the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) recommend keeping newborns and babies younger than 6 months out of direct sunlight. The best sun protection for these infants is to stay in the shade. Look for natural shade, such as under a tree. Or create your own shade under a beach umbrella, a pop-up tent, or a stroller canopy.”

Hold Off On The Sunscreen Until 6 Months

It’s generally recommended to avoid using sunscreen on babies under 6 months of age, unless you’re in a situation without adequate shade or appropriate clothing and hats. In that event, try a baby-friendly sunscreen with SPF 30+, only applying to necessary exposed areas. After 6 months of age, apply a sunscreen with SPF 30+ (ideally SPF 50) generously to all exposed skin. The American Academy of Dermatologists recommends broad-spectrum water-resistant mineral sunscreens that contain titanium dioxide or zinc oxide, as they’re less likely to irritate a baby’s sensitive skin. You’ll need to reapply every couple hours or after extended periods in the water. As each baby’s skin and sensitivities are different, it’s smart to talk to your pediatrician about their recommendations.

Use SPF Clothing and Hats

Fortunately, it’s easier than ever to find SPF 50+ clothing, hats, swimsuits, swim diapers, and cover ups now, in cute fabrics and patterns, too. Many swimsuits for both genders now come with sleeves, shorts, and even pants. Coolibar, Target, Land’s End, Carter’s, RuggedButts and RuffleButts, and more have great swimwear options. Primary offers reusable swim diapers with SPF protection in a host of fun colors. Baby sunglasses add even more needed protection, if you can get them to keep them on of course.

Add Window Shades to Your Car Windows

Some cars and vans come with them built in, or they’re available at your favorite baby product store. Especially during summer road trips, these handy additions to your car can prevent unnecessary sun exposure.

Keep a Pop-up Tent Handy

For everything from trips to the pool to vacations on the beach, pop-up tents like these from BuyBuyBaby offer SPF protection for baby to play or nap. Some are small enough to fold up and easily slip into your beach bag.

Stay Hydrated

Staying safe in the sun also includes making sure baby stays hydrated. Follow age-appropriate feeding recommendations to ensure baby gets the formula, breast milk, or water they need.

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