The sun is what keeps every little living being ticking, and we cannot imagine our life without it. However, it uses what can well be referred to as the carrot-and-stick approach. It emits UV light, which may cause severe burns and create a potential for cancer. This specifically applies to infants and toddlers.
Protect your child at all costs!
The best thing you can do is keep your child out of sunlight from 10 a. m. until 4 p. m., when the sun burns at its hardest. However, it is not always feasible. This is when sun protection should come to the foreground.
Well, if there is no alternative for you but to take your little son or daughter along with you, do your uttermost to protect his or her skin. Babies have an extremely sensitive skin, and even a brief exposure to sunlight may have consequences. Here are some simple steps:
- Use a light-weight wide-brimmed hat.
- Put loose tight-weave clothes on your child and make sure that arms, legs, back and belly are covered.
- Use a stroller with a wide shade.
If you realize these steps are not enough, use sun protection. In this case, choosing one that will be safe for your little one in all aspects is your paramount task.
Using such agents on children under six months is no longer a taboo. However, even if you do find the right type of sun protection formula for your kid, use it on bare areas only and seek every little opportunity to put your child in a shaded place!
What is the best one for a child?
Please, make sure that the cream, lotion, spray, gel, etc., which you have chosen, (is):
- Free of allergens and other potentially hazardous agents, such as zinc oxide and titanium dioxide
- Water resistant
- Mild smelling
- Free of insecticides or repellents
- Provides a broad-spectrum protection against UVA and UVB light
- Has a SPF ranging between 30 and 50.
How to use it properly
If your child is 6 months old or younger, you must dose sun protection properly. Please, read the leaflet and follow all instructions. It is also advisable to consult your pediatrician. He or she will advise you an amount that will be neither too much nor too little for your baby. Check your child’s health record and be more careful if he/she has a history of allergies.
If you have found something, you should check it first. Apply a small amount of it and see if any adverse reaction (reddening, rash, etc.) occurs.
Apply it 30 minutes before going out to let it spread evenly over the skin. Be careful when using it on the face. Do not let it get into the mouth or eyes.
If you are out for a long time, reapply sun protection every 2 hours or more frequently if baby is sweating heavily. However, it must be remembered that 2 hours in the sunlight is too much for a baby even if you use the best quality sun protection.
If the sun is partially covered by clouds, use sun protection anyway, because clouds let UV light through!
It is a well-known fact that babies need vitamin D. Please, do not choose sunlight as a source of it! Using a vitamin D supplement will be a much healthier option.