Check Out These Summer Safety Tips For Babies

You CANNOT over prepare when it comes to being in the sun with your kiddos.

July 10, 2019
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We went to the pool over the Fourth of July Holiday weekend with some of our friends and let me tell ya, it's an ordeal getting everything ready for the girls AND getting them ready!  Lu will be 3 in September and Charli is 6-months-old, so each girl has certain needs when it comes to the pool and being in the sun. 

You CANNOT over prepare when it comes to being in the sun with your kiddos.  I found this great article from Pregnant Chicken about summer safety for babies and wanted to share it with you.

Here are some highlights:

Protect them from the sun

We may have begged and pleaded for Mister Golden Sun to shine down on us, but the reality is you’re going to want to limit their direct exposure, ‘cause DAYUM he’s burning bright these days.

Tips to stay safe:

  • Dress your baby in light-weight, long-sleeved, sun-protective clothing.
  • Use a hat and sunglasses to protect their head and face.
  • If they’re older than 6 months, use sunscreen or sunblock over SPF15, and UVA/UVB protective.
  • If they’re younger than 6 months, try to use shade or protective clothing, but if you’re in a pinch, a bit of sunscreen is better than a burn.

What to avoid:

  • Direct sun. (You’re a smart cookie so I’m not going to explain that it’s fine to walk from your house to the car, but not okay lallygag and meander like a toddler. You get it.) Oh, and don’t forget to put sunscreen on your own body – especially the back of the neck (she types, with a sunburn on the back of her neck). Using your own body as a sunshade seems like a good idea until you do it and cry in the shower.

 

Prevent them from overheating

Unlike that crevasse between your jugs, babies can’t sweat effectively, which makes them less capable of cooling off once hot weather sets in. A baby that overheats is at risk of developing hyperthermia and/or heat exhaustion, which can be life-threatening if not caught in time.

Tips to stay safe:

  • Take advantage of that 5:15am wake-up call, and get outdoors before the heat of the day.
  • Increase their fluid intake (milk or formula only for babies under 6 months), and be sure to increase your own fluids if you’re nursing.
  • Hang out somewhere that’s air-conditioned. Think libraries, malls, and oh I don’t know, Target probably has a/c, but I’m just guessing here.

What to avoid:

  • Never leave your baby alone in the car. Even with the windows cracked. Even if you’re standing near-by while they nap. It’s not safe, even in moderate temperatures. And as far as leaving your baby in the car on accident, take precautions and minimize that risk as much as possible. 
  • Skip blankets over your stroller as a way to keep the sun off your baby. Without proper ventilation, the inside of the stroller can reach dangerously high temperatures, even with something as light as a muslin swaddle if there isn’t proper air flow. Instead, use something designed to provide shade safely.
  • That great infant car seat cover that you loved during the windy winter months might be trapping heat in during the summer months so keep an eye on the air flow.

 

Prevent a water-related accident

The sad reality is that even a small amount of water can be deadly in a remarkably short period of time. Drowning is one of the leading causes of death in children, with the highest number of deaths occurring in kids aged 1-4. It is silent, quick, and hard to recognize to the untrained eye. It also doesn’t have to occur in a pool or large body of water. Buckets, bathtubs, and even landscape features need to be considered when talking about water safety.

Tips to stay safe

  • Be hypervigilant. What this looks like in your family will depend on your exposure. Pool safety will look different than ocean or bathtub safety, but the baseline rule should be zero water exposure without eyes or hands-on contact.
  • Establish who is watching who before heading into the water.
  • Baby proof your space so doors and gates get locked, preventing unsupervised access to water.
  • Get and use a life jacket.
  • Be serious about monitoring bath time.

What to avoid:

  • Unsupervised water time. Acknowledge that terrible things happen in a blink of an eye and make a plan about how you are going to prevent it.