Newborn Sun Exposure - Health Risks and Tips

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There are dangers and benefits for babies who spend time in the sun. With the weather heating up during the day, it may be tempting to spend more of your time outdoors. Therefore, it is crucial that you have an understanding of risks and issues of newborn sun exposure. Read on to learn more about newborn sun exposure and some tips to help keep your baby safe.

Potential Risks

According to an article from NPR, newborn sun exposure is a serious concern because babies skin is especially susceptible to damage. The damage to baby's skin may be subtle at first, but the impact can last a lifetime. In fact, even one sunburn can significantly increase the risk of melanoma later in life. Additionally, the difficulty of managing a little one with a sunburn can be quite overwhelming for new parents. There is also the serious risk of heat stroke or even dehydration that could be dangerous for your infant.

Prevention of Issues

Armed with the knowledge of the potential issues that can arise from newborn sun exposure, it is necessary to take steps to prevent such dangerous situations. According to the Skin Cancer Foundation, it is recommended to keep your baby completely out of the sun as much as possible before six months of age. If taking them into the sun is unavoidable, keep your child covered as much as possible with clothing that blocks as much UV as possible. One rule of thumb is to utilize clothing with a tight weave as it blocks more sunlight from reaching your baby’s skin. It is also a good idea to make sure family members and nannies are aware of the dangers and what precautions to take.

Practical Tips

Below you will find some everyday ideas to help with newborn skin exposure management:

  • Sun is strongest between 10 am and 4 pm so schedule your outdoor with your baby outside of those hours.

  • Check the UV Index on days when you will be outside with baby

  • Utilize shade whenever possible

  • Keep sunscreen in the diaper bag

  • Use an outdoor sun tent with built in UV protection for beach days

  • Don’t forget the hat and sunglasses