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Category: Safety


Sunscreen for Babies?

Should you be putting sunscreen on your baby this summer? The answer depends on the age.

Younger than 6 months

Babies younger than 6 months should NOT wear sun screen. Instead, parents should employ other methods of sun protection such as:

  • Keeping them out of direct sunlight
  • Protective clothing
  • Hats with brims
  • Sunglasses

Older than 6 Months

If your baby is 6 months or older, they should wear sunscreen and lots of it! When putting sunscreen on babies, make sure to:

  • Pick an SPF of at least 15
  • Reapply every 2 hours (more if they’re in the water)
  • Use sunscreen that contains zinc oxide or titanium dioxide as to avoid skin and eye irritation

Sunscreen Guidelines

Broad Spectrum

To help narrow down your choices, pediatrics doctors recommend that you always select a broad-spectrum sunscreen. These types will help to provide the best overall protection against both types of harmful ultraviolet rays, which include UVA and UVB.

Sunburn Protection Factor (SPF)

The SPF tells you the amount of protection provided against UVB rays specifically, which are the rays that cause burning. For example, a bottle with SPF 15 tells us that a person can be exposed to the sun 15 times longer than someone that hasn’t applied this sunscreen before they start to burn. Choose an SPF with a minimum of 30 for kids.

UVA Protection

While there is no rating used for UVA rays, which are the rays that cause aging of the skin, there are products that can offer protection from these harmful rays. Choose sunscreens that contain avobenzone and ecamsule.

Water Resistant/Water Proof

To ensure that sunscreen stays on and protects your child while they play outdoors, especially while swimming, it is important that you select a water resistant or water proof sunscreen. Water resistant sunscreens maintain their protection levels for approximately 40 minutes upon immersion in water. After this time, it is necessary to reapply. Water proof sunscreens last a little longer, with a time of about 80 minutes.

A portion of this blog was originally posted on June 6, 2014.

Posted in Blog, Safety on May 21st, 2018

Swimming and Water Safety 2018

School’s out and the summer’s here. Like every year, Pediatrix wants to provide parents and guardians with helpful tips to keep their children safe in the pool.

Quick Facts

  • In the U.S., drowning is the leading cause of unintentional death in children ages 1-4.
  • A child can drown in the time it takes to answer a phone.
  • Of all preschoolers who drown, 70% are in the care of one or both parents at the time of the drowning and 75% are missing from sight for five minutes or less.

Tips

  1. Establish Rules. Make sure everyone knows the rules before entering the pool area and continually enforce them. Small children don’t always think before they act, so state the obvious before it becomes an issue.
  2. No Swimming Unattended. Install locks on doors and sliding doors high enough to prevent children from heading out to the pool alone. Always shut and lock pool gates and patio doors at apartment complexes and hotels, and at home when pool time is over.
  3. Life Guard Duty. Always have at least one adult assigned to watch those in the pool. Don’t assume someone is watching. If there is drinking at a pool party with children, have some designated drivers on lifeguard duty, because alcohol decreases awareness and slows response time.
  4. Swimming Abilities. Use the appropriate flotation devices and supervision with children who are still learning to swim. Also, don’t overestimate the abilities of adults who will be supervising children. They will need to be able to rescue a child in case of an emergency.
  5. Use Steps. No diving or running. This prevents injuries like falling on the pool deck, as well as reducing the risk of drowning.
  6. Maintain Safety Equipment. This includes pool drains, covers, ladders, fencing, barriers, locks, first aid kits, and rescue equipment. ​​​​
  7. Pick Up Toys. Put away pool toys so children don’t go in after them later.
  8. Head Count. Always know where every child is. If a child is missing, time is of the essence. Always check the pool first, even if you thought he or she was playing somewhere else.
  9. CPR and First Aid. Get yourself certified, and post CPR information by the pool as a reminder in case of emergency.
  10. Visit the Drowning Prevention Coalition of Arizona for more tips and resources, including city codes regarding pool safety.

Note: this article was originally posted on April 30th, 2017

Posted in Blog, Safety on May 14th, 2018