There’s nothing more exciting than getting out and enjoying the warmth of July with your little ones – whether they’re a few years or even just a few months old! Summer means long days full of sunshine, swimming, and the outdoors; as a parent, though, it also means taking extra precautions to ensure that a day by the pool doesn’t end with a scary trip to the doctor. These sun-dappled months present a great opportunity to get out of the house and enjoy some fresh air with your new baby, but it’s important to keep in mind that when it comes to summer safety, there are lots of things you’ll need to think about to keep your child happy and healthy. Don’t worry, though – we’ve put together a handy list here that covers everything you’ll need to keep in mind for a relaxing, stress-free summer outdoors, no matter how young your kids might be. Read on, and get ready to make some new memories this summer with the whole family!
Dress for Success
You wouldn’t head down to the beach in your parka or lounge poolside in a cable knit sweater, and neither should your baby! Keep your little one nice and cool by dressing her appropriately for the weather – that means breezy, lightweight clothes in bright colours that won’t get too hot in the sun. A full-coverage hat featuring a brim that goes all the way around will help keep the sun at bay, and sunglasses will help keep her eyes safe (while giving her extra style points, to boot!).
Don’t Forget that Sunscreen!
Everyone knows not to venture out into the blistering summer sun without first applying a liberal coating of sunscreen to any unprotected skin, and that’s doubly-true for your little one. Babies have incredibly sensitive skin, so it’s important to keep them safe from the sun’s harmful rays if you plan on spending any time outdoors. Look for a sunblock with broad-spectrum UVA and UVB protection, and go for the highest SPF possible. Plenty of infant sunscreens come with a Sun Protection Factor of 70 or higher, so be sure not to settle for anything with less than 50 SPF for your little one’s delicate skin. Keep on top of re-application, too – just because you put sunscreen on in the morning doesn’t mean it will last all day. Slather on a fresh coat of the stuff every two hours (or in between every swim session) to keep baby safe and burn-free.
Again, this is a tip that applies to anyone who’s planning to be out in the sun for any amount of time, but it couldn’t be truer for kids and babies. Proper hydration is crucial to avoid overheating, and the younger someone is, the easier it is for them to become dehydrated – plenty of water is key for everyone six months and older. If you’re out in the sun with a child who’s less than half a year old, stick to formula or breastmilk, as supplemental water will only serve to flush out key nutrients before they can be properly digested.
Always Be on Hand and Paying Attention
This is probably the biggest and most essential piece of advice for keeping baby safe this summer – be there, and be present. Little ones need constant supervision at the best of times, and the dog days of summer are no exception. Whether you’re at the pool, the park, or even just in your own backyard, it’s important to constantly have a bead on how your little on is faring in the sun’s warmth. Take frequent cooldown breaks to avoid overheating, and keep an eye out for high body temperatures, rapid pulse rates, and red, flushed skin – these are all potential indicators of heat exhaustion or sun stroke, and should be treated with serious urgency if you notice them. Being present and aware before these symptoms set in will allow you to intervene before things get to that point, though, which is of course always going to be the best-case scenario.
Don’t Forget to Have Fun!
With all these instructions and guidelines we’re laying down, we have yet to mention perhaps the most important rule of all: have fun! Baby’s first summer only comes around once in a lifetime, and there’s a whole incredible world out there of warmth, beauty, and excitement that she’ll be eager to explore and experience. Summer is a special time of year in which memories are made and families grow closer together – so, while we definitely encourage you to wholeheartedly follow this advice, don’t forget to have a blast out there while you’re at it. Enjoy the summer heat, and as always, thanks for reading!