This is the time your child is most likely to be outdoors playing in the sun. Here are some precautions you need to take.
Summer's here, and most children are well on their way to enjoying their summer vacation. This is the time your child is most likely to be outdoors playing in the sun. Here are some precautions you need to take.
Studies suggest that most of the permanent damage caused by the sun, is caused to kids under the age of 18. Often, the damage is permanent, and shows up in the from of early wrinkles, pigmentation, and even skin cancer. Fortunately though Indian skin is more able to cope with sun exposure than Western skin, but this doesn't mean that the sun doesn't cause us any harm. It can and it does, so protect your child this summer.
Keep babies under six months old away from direct sun exposure. Even a mild sunburn can be harmful for babies. In addition, sunscreens are not recommended for very young babies, so your best bet would be to keep your baby away from sun exposure.
If you are going for a picnic and will be in the sun all day, make sure your baby is well shielded. Keep her in a pram with the hood above her at all times, and park the pram in a shady spot. If you are unsure about whether there will be any shade, invest in a beach umbrella and take it along with you. The sun is harshest from noon to around 3 o' clock, so at this time make sure the kids play under the shade of the umbrella. At other times, encourage your child to play indoors during midday.
If your child is going to be outdoors at midday, make sure he wears a hat and sunscreen. The best way to ensure he wears his hat, is to take him with you when hat shopping. Let him choose a hat. If it is a hat branded with his favourite logo, chances are higher that he will wear it all the time! So if you're on a budget, buy him the inexpensive shirt, and go with the expensive hat!
Exposure of the eyes to UV radiation in childhood leads to cataracts at a later age, so always protect your child's eyes. Sunglasses are more than a fashion statement - they are a must to protect your child's eyes. Don't skimp when buying sunglasses. Cheap sunglasses may contain a number, which will damage your child's eyes and weaken his vision. Similarly, may not contain UV protection, and as such will be of little help. Purchase sunglasses from a reliable retailer, and invest in a pair that affords as much eye protection as possible. Take your child with you when buying sunglasses so that he can have a say in what you buy, and also so that you pick up something that fits him well. The best sunglasses are those that wrap around your child's head and protect the sides of the eyes from the sun as well. They look great on kids, and kids love them because they are slick, and look cool and funky.
Apply sunscreen to your older child at least half an hour before he leaves home. If he is going to be outdoors for a while, let him carry some along and encourage him to reapply it in a few hours, or after a swim.