But if you’ve allowed your child to play outside without adequate sun protection, you’ve taken an enormous health risk.
We should buckle down and protect our young.”
Do you remember your baby’s silk smooth skin? When your child is outside, the ultra-violet beams of the sun can easily damage the skin leading to wrinkles and cancer in future. Always bear in mind that there’s not any such thing as a healthy tan because tanning is a sign of sun damage.
So quite naturally, the foremost question that may come to your mind is at what age is it right to begin using sunscreen on your baby?
Prior to 6 months, it’s ideal to avoid sunscreen usage on your baby with exception to those particular products which contain only zinc oxide as the sole active ingredient. Use only on the exposed parts of your baby’s body. Furthermore, use shaded clothing as the principal protection method. Regulate outdoor times by going out before 10am or after 4pm so that you can avoid the intense sun rays.
This brings us to the next question of – how much sunscreen should I use on my child and in what frequency?
Presently The Skin Cancer Foundation hasn’t prescribed any set quantity of sunscreen for growing kids. As a parent, ensure that you’ve covered the majority of the exposed parts and have not ignored places like ears, tops of feet, backs of knees, and hands. Rub the sunscreen at least 30 minutes before going out so that the skin has had ample time to absorb the lotion.
It’s advised that you reapply every two hours.
You may have difficulty in deciding on which is the best sunscreen to your child.
Cambio and pediatrician Jerome A. Paulson, MD, FAAP, medical director for national and international events in the Child Health Advocacy Institute of Children’s National Medical Centre in Washington, D.C has recommended,”Pick a sunscreen that includes zinc oxide or titanium dioxide because the chemicals are less bothersome than others or get absorbed into the skin. These ingredients are likely the safest ones available right now. There is some concern that other sunscreen ingredients, particularly oxybenzone and retinyl palmitate that’s kind of Vitamin A, can cause harm. But, both chemicals are FDA approved for use in sunscreens.”
In spite of these efforts, your child may still get sunburned.
Do not panic if this happens. Get in contact with your pediatrician especially if your child is below the age of one. If you see blisters, together with severe pain and fever and your child is over one year old, you may try some home remedies like cool baths or a moist compress which may assist in reducing immediate pain, swelling and itching. Until full recovery, make certain that your child does not wander outdoors.