If you're anything like us here at Fawn and Doe, We love to get outdoors…. Especially in the summer. We love camping, fishing, the beach, hiking just to name a few. We want to pass the love of our amazing planet on to our children…. But how do we keep our babies safe from the sun and insect bites that go along with outdoor activities?
New babies' skin is delicate and much thinner than our skin and is more susceptible to UVB and UVA rays and are also more susceptible to dehydration. A baby can burn in 15 minutes depending on the UV index. Doctors recommend not using sunscreen on babies under 6 months old. As you may know, I absolutely hate harmful chemicals. My son and I are both highly sensitive and allergic to many common chemicals found in things like sunscreen and bug sprays. A deep dive into the types of chemicals in sunscreen and bug spray is alarming. It's very important to protect yourself and your baby from itchy bug bits and ticks as well as from the sun's UVB and UVA rays.
So what are outdoor summer loving new moms to do?? Here is our New Baby Summer Survival Guide!
1. Avoid Peak Sun Times:
Try not to expose your baby to the sun in peak hours when the sun's UVB rays are most intense. That's usually between 11am and 3pm.
2- Find some overhead shade:
Look for a shady spot for the baby, a tree, use your stroller top, an umbrella, a muslin blanket that allows air flow, or a baby beach tent.
3. Cover your baby:
If you are out during peak times, then ensure your baby's skin is protected. Wear a big brimmed hat, sunglasses and UV protective clothing. If your baby is older than 6 months, you can use a sunscreen on exposed skin - one containing zinc oxide. Check with your doctor if you have any concerns about what is safe to put on your baby's skin. This lightweight muslin organic cotton lightweight blanket is a great option to create some shade.
4. Use a natural bug repellent:
Again, always check with your doctor if you have specific questions or concerns. Test a small patch of skin before applying all over. Spray the areas around baby rather than on baby directly; the stroller, carrier, etc...whatever they will be carried in...spray that object. We've even had several mama's tell us they spray the baby's clothes, hat and/or blanket (although we have never done this ourselves so can't attest to whether it stains and/or washes out easily). The thinking is similar to a citronella candle in that the idea is to create a bubble of protection. Just be careful not to spray teethers, toys or objects that will go into the mouth! Try our Take-A-Hike outdoor spray lotion with all natural ingredients like citronella, jojoba, cedarwood and lemongrass. And its DEET FREE!
5. Keep baby hydrated:
Babies under 6 months old who are breastfeeding or bottle feeding, do not need to drink water. Breast milk and formula have all the hydration and nutrition baby needs. Giving young babies (under 6mths) water even when its very hot, can put them at risk of malnutrition. Since babies can’t tell you if they are thirsty, watch for irritability or if they are more floppy- this could indicate some heat stress. If you feel your baby is thirsty, put them on the breast, or bottle more often than usual. Babies older than 6 months, can have a few ounces of water a day. It should be boiled first, then cooled. A good indication of a well hydrated baby is about 8 wet/dirty diapers in a 24hr period, good skin colour and baby is alert and reasonably content. Check out this awesome thermos baby bottle for those hot summer days, keeps liquids warm or cold for 10 hours!
Click on our summer collection below to find our high quality UV protective clothing, hats, sunglasses and natural bug spray. Take the stress out of being outdoors with your little one. Not only will your baby be the cutest one in the campground or at the park, you will have the peace of mind knowing that they are safe!