While most parents know that sunscreen is absolutely essential for kids after the age of six months, there’s still the matter of which product is best. Commonly, the choice comes down to lotion, spray, or stick. Because children have more delicate skin, they can get sunburns more easily – even on a cloudy day. On top of that, sunburn from too much time spent in the sun, without any type of protection, has been linked by scientists to a higher risk of skin cancer later in life.
Doctors Recommend Switching Sunscreens According to the Situation
As the weather warms up every year, parents stand in the drugstore aisle, asking themselves what’s the best sunscreen for their kids. In addition to factors like price and brand, parents must also solve the issue of formulation when making their sunscreen decision. Lotion, spray, and stick are all good products, but when it comes to kids, which one is best? According to dermatologist Dr. Julia Carroll, it’s all about personal preference, but parents should know more about the different versions of sunscreen and when to apply them.
Sunscreen Stick for the Face, Lotion for Base, and Spray for Touch-Ups
When it comes to children, Dr. Carroll recommends a lotion as a base, a stick for the face, and a spray for quick touch-ups. The stick is good for the contours and a great way to get kids engaged without having them make a mess. It also doesn’t dilute with sweat and doesn’t go into the eyes, making it great for the areas around them.
Some Kids Don’t Like Lotion Sunscreen for Their Faces and Prefer Stick
The stick can also be a game-changer because kids often don’t like it when lotion goes on their faces. This has even led some parents to apply sunscreen on their kids with a makeup brush. Apparently, the practice helps with achieving full coverage. On the other hand, there’s sunscreen spray. Some people spray it on their kids and then don’t rub it in. While this does work, it’s far from ideal. The right way to use a sunscreen spray, and achieve proper coverage, is by spraying it into the hands and then applying it.
Of course, there’s always the option where kids learn how to apply their sunscreen on their own. When kids get involved and take ownership of their skin health, it’s great for them and their parents, too. It’s a good start to have a child apply a stick sunscreen to their face and in the form of a game. One such game can be a challenge to cover every inch of their face before checking the results in a mirror.
It’s normal to want to keep your baby cool during hot summer days and protect them from the sun. However, this doesn’t mean that throwing a cover on their stroller is a good idea. As a matter of fact, this is a very dangerous mistake that way too many parents are making and it needs to stop ASAP!
Why Covering the Stroller Is Dangerous
Svante Norgren, a pediatrician at the Astrid Lindgren Children’s Hospital in Stockholm, said that parents are making matters worse when they try to keep their baby from the sun with the use of covers. Whether it’s a thin muslin blanket or something else, the condition inside the stroller can get quite uncomfortable for the little one. The risk of something bad happening also rises significantly. The cover will keep the air from flowing freely and will make temperatures rise inside the stroller.
The Test Results
A newspaper decided to test the pediatrician’s theory and they found out that for 90 minutes, a stroller that has not been covered heats up to about 70°F. A stroller with a thin covering reached 93°F in just 30 minutes, and 30 more minutes later, the temperature reached 98°F. This is a result of the covering blocking the airflow inside of the stroller, just like it happens in a car. And this can pose an incredibly high risk to little ones.
Why It’s Important to Skip the Cover
It’s important to know that babies and little children can get affected by heat way more than older children and adults. They sweat a lot less and can’t regular their body temperature all that well. They also can’t tell you when they’re feeling too hot and this puts them at a big risk of heat-related illnesses, heat exhaustion, dehydration, and heat stroke. Babies and small children who have been exposed to heat for too long can be more tired, thirsty, and faint. Other signs of heat-related illnesses include restlessness, vomiting, and quick breathing. Some already existing medical conditions can get worse in the heat.
To avoid all that, use mesh covers or specially designed sun shields for strollers. Dress your baby in light clothes, give them more fluids than usual, avoid the peak hours, stick to the shade, and check on them regularly.