Summer is upon us and of course that means you’ll be looking for ways to stay cool. Going to the pool or beach can be a fun way to cool off in the heat of the summer day. Babies love the water, and all the fresh air and sunshine is sure to help wear them out for a good night’s sleep (or at least a good nap). I’ve gathered some tips for you when you take your baby to the beach or pool.
Let’s break it down into categories. First let’s talk about preparations before you leave the house. Consider going later in the day when the sun’s rays are not as strong. The recommendation is going before 10am or after 4pm. Check the UV index for the day before heading out.
What to take with you:
- UVB clothing or light weight long sleeves, and pants to cover tender baby skin.
- Sunscreen (The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends using a minimal amount of sunscreen with at least 15 SPF or higher. )
- Towels (bring a couple more than you think you’ll need)
- These items should be taken in addition for the beach:
- Flat sheet
- Shoes that cover the foot (not flip flops)
- A windbreak or sun tent
While you are there:
- Take breaks from the sun and move to a shady area or into the tent or under an umbrella
- Drink plenty of water
- Reapply sunscreen often
- Sit back away from the water when not in it to avoid the reflection of the sun coming off of the water
Tips to remember:
- Keep in mind that if you have traveled to a location closer to the equator the sun’s rays will be stronger and sunburn will happen a lot faster
- Clouds provide zero protection from the sun so don’t make a rookie mistake and assume you or your child won’t burn if it’s a cloudy day. It can actually be more dangerous since you won’t feel the heat from the sun to know you are burning.
- Look for signs of heat exhaustion or heat stroke which can include the following:
- 103 degree Fahrenheit temperature or higher but not sweating
- Hot, red, dry skin
- Rapid pulse
- If your baby has any of these signs you should seek treatment from professionals asap.
Have fun, relax and enjoy the water and sun!