Newborn Sun Safety
Babies under 6 months should not spend any time in the direct sun. Because your baby's own photo-protection is still underdeveloped, sunburn can occur despite your best sun blocking efforts — and it may take only 10 to 15 minutes for their skin to burn!
Most paediatricians recommend that sunscreen products not be used on babies under 6 months of age, which means you'll need other methods of protection. When taking your baby outdoors:
- Stay indoors between 10 am and 2 pm, the hottest part of the day
- A hat with a brim is a must
- Loose clothing can help protect the rest of your baby's skin
- Sit under shade, or create your own, with an awning or a light blanket
Even on cloudy days or while riding in the car, always use a sunscreen specially developed for babies. If your baby is younger than 6 months of age, discuss the use of sunscreens with your early childhood nurse or health care professional.
Caring for Older Babies
Even older babies (and children) should avoid exposure to direct sun for any extended period. They should always wear protective clothing and sunglasses. Check with your health care professional about using a broad-spectrum sunscreen (with UVA and UVB protection and an SPF of at least 30)
As your child grows and matures far past babyhood, continue to ensure that their skin is carefully protected from the sun. By establishing healthy habits, you can provide nurturing care for your baby now, and for years to come.