Monday, July 18, 2016

Babies in the Sun! 5 Tips for keeping babies safe on the sunniest of days

Summer can be one of the greatest times of the year for families who like to get out and enjoy the outdoors.  A day at the beach can mean lots of fun for everyone, but it can also turn ugly. For all children, sun protection is something important to be considered, but especially for the youngest ones who are not recommended to use sunscreen! Here are my top 5 tips for having your little ones out in the sun! Please subscribe to get more from me on health, nutrution, exercise, holistic treatments and alternative care for pregnancy, birth, and beyond.

1. Sunscreen. If you can, use it! I recommend Badger sunscreen. The non-nano particles of aluminum in the formula mean that the toxins of aluminum don't absorb into the skin. If your child is younger than 6 months, or if you want to avoid aluminum altogether, many people suggest a homemade sunscreen of coconut and carrot seed oils. These oils have a natural SPF, but the extent of protection from using them alone is not known. 
2. Shade: Bring your own shady spot and ensure everyone has a place to sit and take a moment out of direct sunlight!

3. Sleep spot: If you have a little one that naps, having a safe space for them to sleep is an absolute must!!

My secret?
Dig a child-sized crater in the sand BEFORE putting down your shaded tent. Put the crater near an outside edge, and lay a blanket over it. Presto! Instant comfy spot for the little one to nap. <3
4. Hat: Make sure light-skinned and light-haired children have a hat to wear when they are in direct sunlight. While the hat only has a 50 % chance of staying on while the child is in the sand, and probably less than 10% once they hit the water, the more protection you can give, the better especially for those younger ones with less hair to protect them. 

5. Food: Don't forget the most important part! If you're going to the beach, or the pool, or even the lake with kids, you MUST bring food! Bottles of water are also important. Bring sandwiches, granola bars, fruit, veggies, and whatever else is portable that your children will eat. Expect them to be hungry.. but realize they may be so 'busy' they don't want to eat too! Keep after them to drink water at the very least.

And of course, water safety is paramount in any location that has it available. My older children have been taught the buddy system, and while it's not perfect (I've had one incident of a child wandering off this summer) and I will have a life jacket on O when he is old enough to put himself in the water.
Most of all, be safe. Children can develop heatstroke very easily, especially those with boundless energy who refuse to rest in the sun all day. My own daughter is this way, and finding her limits has been hard.

So from my family to yours, Happy Summer!! I'm so glad it's finally here and we are loving every moment!

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