Summer Safety Tips for Babies & Toddlers
With Summer now well and truly here, it's the perfect time to get outdoors with your little ones and have some fun.
Lets face it after the past few years, the chance to see friends and just enjoy the weather is so welcome. As well as being good for mental health, a little sunshine and fresh air is certainly an energizing boost for physical health as well and we all know that a little fresh air and exercise is great for ensuring a good nights sleep!
But before setting off on a mini adventure with little ones in tow, there are some safety tips that should be followed to ensure everyone has a safe and fun-filled time!
Here are the top 5 tips we adhered to when our children were at the 'beginning to explore' stage in the Summer time.
Credit: Ashley K Bowen
It may seem obvious if you're off to the beach or park, but even if you are going out for a walk and your child is in their pushchair, make sure you cover them in a suitably high factor cream. Remember, even if the pushchair has a shade, the Sun will be coming down at all sorts of angles and those lovely rays of light could have some seriously harmful effects on delicate skin.
So, whatever you are doing, wear sunscreen for yourself, and cover your little one in a cream with a SPF Factor50+. Don't forget to keep applying the sunscreen whilst you are out, especially after going in any pools or splash pads.
There's a variety of sunscreens available from roll on bottles to the traditional spray types and pump bottles. Roll ons are handy as they fit in a bag or glove box very easily as do sprays, but whatever you choose, check the SPF and that the cream is suitable for children. It’s also really important to ensure that the sun screen is in date as this can lower its effectiveness – so no using last years left overs!
Another one that may seem obvious but is easy to overlook, is ensuring your little one stays hydrated. This is especially important during summer months and it is incredibly easy to forget to hydrate as often as we should.
Having plenty to drink before a day out, and having drink available at all times is vitally important.
If like our children, your little ones have an aversion to drinking plain water, then try adding a small amount of sugar free concentrated squash or cordial to their favourite drinking cup. This will encourage them to keep topping up their fluid levels and could save a lot of potentially harmful situations.
If you’re struggling to encourage them to drink as often as you’d like them too, try other ways of hydrating such as giving ice pops or fruits like watermelon to suck on.
Love them or loathe them, hats are another important item in your Summer safety
Obviously there are thousands of designs available, but hats with rims or built in neck guards are a great way of looking after your little ones health.
Nowadays it's easy to check via an app or website to see when the hottest part of the day is likely to fall.
Try to plan to be in the shade or away from direct sunlight whilst the Sun is at it's hottest. The normal time for the weather to be at it's most threatening here in the UK is between 3-4:30pm. This is because the Sun has reached it's zenith at 12, and unless the weather has changed, then the temperature will continue to rise until late afternoon.
The trick is to think ahead and plan your outing accordingly.
Avoid Insect Bites
Mother Nature is a marvel and at this time of year, anything that crawls, or flies is
likely to be at it's most active.
Now nobody likes being bitten or stung, least of all little ones….but thankfully there are ways to cut down your chances.
There's a huge variety of insect repellents available, if possible try to find out which is the most effective for any bugs in your area. Manufacturers will often state which insects they are most effective for, for example a mosquito repellent, but if possible make sure it is a suitable product for the environment you will be visiting.
Another helpful way to avoid getting stung is to avoid wearing bright clothing, or designs with flowers on them as these things can really attract bees seeking to collect pollen. Try to remember as well that if you encounter bees or other biting/stinging insects, you should remain as calm as possible and leave that spot to find somewhere where they are less active.
Keep food or sugary drinks covered until you are ready to have them. By covering things up, it is less likely to allow their aroma to circulate and prevents insects from detecting them.
Those are the top 5 tips we followed, and still follow during the summer with our children.
What are your top tips to having fun whilst staying safe during hot summers? I'd love to read about things you do to look after your little ones at this time of year.
Here's hoping you have a fun, and safe Summer!
In addition, sleep safety is also important to our babies. Find more Vacos Baby Monitor information here.
Hayley McLean is a hypnotherapist, a mum of 3 young children, and a blogger. After having 3 babies in the space of 3 years, Hayley uses her blog to share her experiences and tips for parents everywhere on all aspects of family life and raising children.