Sun Safety Tips

Summer and sunshine are fast approaching, so here are some tips to help protect your child from the sun!

Whilst outdoor exposure is great for topping up our bodies with vitamin D, it is important that we do not over expose ourselves. Did you know it doesn’t take long at all for the vitamin to absorb into our bodies? In fact, we can gain our daily intake in as little as 15 minutes!

Most children gain much of their lifetime sun exposure before they reach the age of 18, so it is important for parents to block the sun from their little ones to keep them safe. Over exposure to the sun’s ultraviolet rays can cause skin damage, eye damage, immune system suppression and skin cancer.

Here are some tips to remember to keep you and your child safe from the sun…

Seek shade-  UV rays are strongest and most harmful during midday. If you catch yourself outside at this time, seek shade under a tree, an umbrella, or a pop-up tent.

Get a hat – Hats that shade the face, scalp, ears, and neck are easy to use and give great protection. If your little one constantly pulls their hat off, try one with an elasticated or Velcro strap that tucks under their chin to keep it in place.

Wear sunglasses – They protect your child’s eyes from UV rays, which can lead to cataracts later in life. Look for sunglasses that wrap around and block as close to 100% of both UVA and UVB rays as possible.

Apply sunscreen – Use sunscreen with at least SPF 15  protection every time your child goes outside. For the best protection, apply sunscreen generously 30 minutes before going outdoors. Don’t forget to protect ears, noses, lips, and the tops of feet.

Cover up – Cover your child up in loose cotton clothes, such as an oversized T-shirt with sleeves. At the beach, sun protection tops and suits made of Lycra are perfect for splashing in the sea as they dry quickly and block more of the sun than normal t-shirts.

Stay hydrated – Like adults, babies and young children need to drink plenty of fluids to avoid becoming dehydrated. This is especially true when the sun’s out. Encourage your child to drink plenty of water, or cooled boiled water for babies.

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