Summer is the perfect season for parents with small children. You can put away jumpsuits, hats and sleeping bags. Your baby is more comfortable without so many layers of clothing and it’s way easier for parents to attend to their little one. Below, we will share a few tips on how to take care of your baby when the temperatures outside are getting higher.
Warm days are finally here, you will spend more time outside and your baby will experience the world with their entire body. A warm season means that you need to make some changes to the way you care for your little one. Find below a few important things to remember about to make sure your baby is safe.
First of all: water
Proper hydration is very important. On hot days it is much easier to get dehydrated as the loss of water happens mainly through the skin. In accordance with the guidelines of the American Academy of Pediatrics, infants (children up to 1 year) can only drink milk and water. Juice, tea or sweet beverages contribute to creating bad eating habits and increase the risk of dental caries and obesity. If you breastfeed your infant, your milk is sufficient to hydrate your baby until their 6th month of life – there is no need to give them any additional water, just remember to breastfeed your baby more frequently. Babies fed with a formula may drink water in between feedings. Mums should also remember about drinking water regularly, which has a positive impact on their well-being, skin condition and helps to overcome postpartum body changes.
How to dress your baby?
Perfect summer clothes do not limit your baby’s movements and are comfortable both while dressing your little one and changing the diapers. In the summer, your baby should be dressed in natural, breathable and airy textiles, such as bamboo fabric, which ensures additional protection against the UV rays. Bamboo fabric doesn’t have to be washed in any fabric softeners, which will allow you to eliminate potential allergens that could sensitize your child. Choosing proper clothing and textiles are a significant element of skin care as your baby is dressed for nearly 90% of the time every day. Your baby’s skin condition and the ability to heal skin irritations depend on the quality of clothes to a great extent.
In the spring and summer, when the temperature is lower than 25 degrees Celsius, a child that is not walking yet but is sitting or lying in a pram can be dressed in one extra layer than the parents are comfortable wearing. A blanket should be considered as an additional layer as well.
When there is a heat, a bodysuit or a romper suit will be just right for your baby. You may cover your little one with a breathable swaddle or a diaper. You don’t need to put any hat on except when you want it to provide sun protection. If the temperature is high (higher than 25 degrees Celsius), it is a good idea to take your baby outside in the morning (before 11 am) or in the afternoon (after 3 pm). Remember to always apply a sun cream, preferably a mineral one, with a SPF above 40. Even though bamboo clothes protect your baby’s skin against UV rays, which is their additional advantage, you still should apply a sun cream.
Good night’s sleep
Your baby’s sleep (and your entire family’s) depends on how you dress your baby to bed. The rule here is the same as in the case of dressing your baby to go out – babies under 3-4 months should wear one extra layer of clothes than their parents. Why? Their thermoregulatory system is still immature, which means that they may get cold more frequently and easily. “One extra layer” means that a thin bodysuit can be put under the sleepers. A thin sleeping bag is also an additional layer of clothing.
If possible, the temperature inside the baby’s room should not exceed 21 degrees Celsius. Before you put your baby to sleep, remember to air the room out; it’s also advisable to take a walk with your baby earlier on. You may check your baby’s thermal comfort by touching their neck – if it’s hot or damp, your child is probably hot, if it’s cool, there is a chance your baby is cold. Cool nose, hands or feet are no indication of your baby’s thermal comfort.
Most frequent mistakes
The most frequent mistake resulting from the lack of experience is dressing your baby in too many clothes. Your child may get overheated, which may lead to an infection and cause skin problems, such as prickly heat or chafing. You can mitigate that risk by choosing bamboo clothes because they maintain a temperature lower by an average of 3 degrees than the ambient temperature (on hot days). Therefore, one can say that bamboo clothes prevent overheating and its consequences.
All advice contained in this article is to help build parents’ awareness and take their first steps into parenthood. The most important thing is to listen to your intuition and react to the individual needs of your child. Babies, like all of us, are different: some like to sleep warm, while others prefer cool temperatures and no cover. Watching a baby’s reactions from week to week will allow the parents to come up with their own ways of dressing and taking care of their little ones that will suit their needs best.