Summer is here and whether you’re off on a holiday somewhere sunny or waiting for the sun to show his face in the UK, it is important that we all keep our children safe in the sun. Most of us know that we need to protect our little ones in the warmer weather, but we’re not always sure how to do this correctly. Check out our advice for the best tips on sun care for the kids…
Safe In The Sun | Young Babies
Children’s skin is particularly vulnerable to the effects of ultraviolet radiation, caused by the sun. It is more complicated for babies under the age of 6 months as they have very little melanin, or pigment, in their skin making it too sensitive for the use of sunscreens. Therefore it is vital that young babies are not left in direct sunlight. After 6 months of age, sunscreen is safe to apply, and we recommend regularly topping up throughout the day.
Safe In The Sun | Choosing The Correct Sun Protection For Children
When you’re looking for sun protection for any child, always look for a ‘broad spectrum’ sun lotion. This sun lotion will offer UVA and UVB protection – we also suggest you always use at least Factor 30 on children. We recommend using a cream rather than a spray, although sprays are much easier to apply on wriggly children it often applies thinner layers of protection.
The British Skin Foundation recommends applying sun lotion on children every 2 hours, but there is no harm in more frequent sun cream application.
Safe In The Sun | Keeping Out Of The Sun
We all like the warm weather but the best way avoid sun damage is to avoid the sun. Try and keep little one’s in the shade between 11am and 3pm when the sun is at its hottest. Always make sure children are wearing a t-shirt and hat during these hotter hours. For holidays and days at the beach we recommend getting a small pop up tent and filling it with their favourite toys. For babies, get a canopy cover or parasol for your pushchair to add an extra layer of protection.
Safe In The Sun | Dressing For The Sun
As adults we are often so excited to see the sun that we wear as little as possible to ensure an even tan. However, children have sensitive skin and need to stay covered up for extra protection. When swimming, we recommend a protective sunsuit with UPF 50. For playing outside try and keep their arms and legs covered with a lightweight cotton fabric which will both protect the skin and keep them cool. Also, make sure your children are always wearing a wide brimmed hat outside that will protect their face, neck and ears. It can be difficult to keep sunglasses on babies and children but purchasing a pair of glasses with UV 400 will help to protect young eyes. You can find sunglasses with a rubber headband if you’re worried about the glasses coming off.
Please note this post just offers advice and always seek medical advice if you have any further queries.