It seems as though Summer is finally upon us and with that comes warmer weather.
Getting out and about for walks with your new baby is a great way to get some fresh air and exercise, but babies are particularly vulnerable so it’s important to protect their sensitive skin and help keep them from becoming overheated. Here are some ideas to help you take care of your little one during the Summer.
1. Keep Skin Safe
When you’re outside, it’s best to dress your baby in a sun hat and light, loose fitting clothing that covers her skin, as this helps protect her from harmful UV rays. While your baby is under six months old you should avoid exposing her skin to direct sunlight, so staying in the shade as much as possible is recommended. You can apply factor 50 baby sunscreen to any areas which aren’t covered by clothing and it’s best to keep some sunscreen with you at all times.
2. Stay Hydrated
Breastfed babies should be offered the breast often, as they may well drink more when they’re hot. Extra feeds will help ensure your baby stays hydrated. Bottle fed babies can be offered cool boiled water in addition to (not as a replacement for) their usual feeds. Exclusively breastfed babies should not need to be given any water in addition to their breastmilk in order to stay hydrated.
3. Avoid Overheating
When your baby is very small, she can’t tell you she’s feeling too hot, so it’s paramount you keep her cool and check for signs of overheating. You can check your baby’s temperature by touching her chest. If she feels too warm remove a layer of clothing. At night you should use a room thermometer to ensure the room your baby sleeps in does not become too hot (ideally it should be 16 to 20 degrees C). A cool bath before bed on a hot day can help your baby feel more comfortable. Heat stroke is a serious condition which can kill and babies are especially vulnerable to it. If you’re not sure how to recognise the symptoms of heat stroke, speak to your health visitor or doctor to learn more about it and, if you suspect it, treat it as a medical emergency and call an ambulance immediately.
4. When Baby Is In The Buggy
Never use a blanket to block sun from your baby while she’s in her buggy (it sounds obvious but you would be amazed at the amount of people I have seen doing this) because it can cause your baby to become uncomfortably warm. A parasol or sun visor (if your buggy has one) is best or, if you don’t have one, use a muslin but never a blanket.
By taking precautions to ensure your baby stays cool in warmer weather and protecting her from the sun’s harmful UV rays, you and your baby will be able to share an enjoyable and fun filled Summer.