Summer is a time for fun in the sun but it’s also the season when your baby is most at risk of suffering from the heat. Babies and children overheat and dehydrate more quickly than you, they need more fluids and need to wear light, cool clothing to protect them from the sun. Here are our top tips to ensure that you and your baby enjoy the holiday period safely.
1. Drink enough fluids
Your baby or child won’t always tell you when they are thirsty so it’s important to breastfeed or offer them drinks frequently. A good indication that your baby is getting enough fluids is if they have 6 – 8 wet nappies in 24 hours. Remember that if you are breastfeeding you need to make sure that you are drinking enough water too!
2. Keeping cool
You can keep your baby cool in a number of ways. Dress them in light, loose clothing and broad-brimmed hat for outside, choose the coolest room in the house for them to sleep in, you can put wet sheets or towels around your babies bassinette, give them a lukewarm bath or sponge them down with lukewarm water. If you have an air conditioner set it between 24 – 26 degrees and if you are using a fan don’t point it directly at your baby. Even though you may feel sweltering hot it is important that you regularly check that your baby isn’t getting too cold.
3. Out and about
One of the best measures you can take to ensure that your baby or child is well during the summer is planning your activities for the early morning, late afternoon and evening so that you aren’t out and about during the hottest part of the day – between 11am and 5pm. If you do go out always remember to slip, slop, slap, slide and seek. Only cover your baby’s pram with a light cloth never a rug or towel as this restricts airflow. If possible remove the back panel of the pram to help the air circulate –, never leave your baby, child or pet in a hot car – not even for a moment!
For more tips on how to beat the heat this summer check out www.health.nsw.gov.au/environment/beattheheat/