With the Great British summer upon us and the fluctuating temperatures it’s hard to become acclimatised to good weather. However much we enjoy the lovely warm weather, extremes of climate temperature can cause harm, Dr Lucy Foster, (mum of two and aunty to three including baby Dorothy), gives us some top tips for keeping baby cool and safe in the summertime.
“Babies less than 6 months old should be kept out of direct sunlight as should older infants. If you do take little ones outside, use a parasol to shade them. Don’t be tempted to cover your baby with blankets or cloths to keep them out of the sun, as this could cause them to overheat. Loose cotton clothing will help keep your baby cool, cotton is much better than man-made fibres in hot weather.
Apply sunscreen regularly to children, at least SPF 30. When outside, protect your baby’s head and neck with a hat that has a wide brim or a flap that covers the neck. Always take a baby’s hat off when indoors, even if it means waking them up or they could overheat.
Tips for keeping baby hydrated include: topping up their bottled milk feeds with extra drinks of some cooled boiled water, if breast fed drink plenty yourself and let them feed more often from the breast. For older children, encourage them to drink more and if they refuse water try low-sugar fruit juice or homemade ice lollies. Eating food high in water content like salads can help them keep hydrated.
Keep the temperature of your baby’s room between 16°C to 20°C. This will help ensure your baby’s body temperature stays within the normal range. A room thermometer can help you monitor the temperature in your baby’s room. Keep your baby’s room cool by blocking the sun from coming in with light-coloured blinds or curtains. Dark-coloured blinds or curtains can actually increase the temperature of a room. You could also keep a window open during the day, if safe to do so, to keep the room from getting too hot.
Putting a fan in the bedroom can help to circulate the air, but make sure that both the fan itself and the wire is out of reach, and that the fan isn’t pointed directly at the baby or could potentially fall into the baby’s cot. Keep nightwear and bedclothes to a minimum and cotton. Just a nappy with no bedding is sufficient in hot weather.
A fever is generally considered to be a temperature of 38°C or more. If you’re worried your baby may be too hot, touch them to feel their temperature. Remove layers one at a time until your baby feels cooler. You can more accurately check your baby’s temperature with a thermometer. If the baby has a fever, call your concierge doctor for advice.”
Dr Lucy Foster
For more information about Concierge Medical Practice and our private home visiting, family doctor service please contact us on 01451 600 900 or email email@example.com