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Sun Safety Tips For Babies & Toddlers


With this glorious weather we have been having recently in the UK we have been out and about a lot which means we have been in the sun almost all day. Having a baby or toddler outside in the heat can be very dangerous and you should always be well prepared. There's more to it than just sunscreen and it's important that you know how to keep your baby safe in the sun. It is perfectly safe for your little one to be in the sun, but they need to be protected from the sun's skin damaging rays. Here are some sun safety tips that I have put together for baby or toddler and what you need to know when out about and about in the sun!

Stay out of the sun at peak times

The best time of the day for your little one to be in the sun is before 11am and after 4pm. Infants under 6 months must be kept out of the sun however babies and toddlers over 6 months should be kept of our direct sunlight as the sun ray's are at their strongest during these hours throughout the day. However if you do go out during these ours stay in the shade as much as possible, or break up your sun exposure by timing your outings. Find some shade under a tree at the park or put an umbrella up at the beach. 

Slather on the sunscreen

When choosing a sunscreen its a good idea to buy one with a SPF of 50+ to insure maximum protection agains both UVA and UVB rays. Apply sunscreen up to half an hour before heading outdoors to ensure it absorbs into their skin and reapply every 1-2 hours. Ensure that you cover all exposed areas of your baby's skin, including, their head, ears, neck and feet. If your baby goes in the water you will need to reapply sunscreen again as soon as they come out of the water even if it has been less than 1-2 hours since you last applied it. Don't just skimp it on, you need to apply enough to ensure they are covered from head to toe. 

Bring a sun tent

If you are spending a day at the beach, pool or park and outdoor sun tent will not only keep your toddler cool and shaded but it allows them to nap if they need to. Some parents even bring along mini camp beds or a thin matress especially if you are going to be at the beach or park all day. It will help stop them from feeling out of their home environment. 

Keep Hydrated

Ensure your little one is hydrated through out the day, pack plenty of water and fruit. A good idea is to freeze some bottles of water and leave them in the car for when you go home and it will be nice and cool when you return to the car. 

Dress your baby in protective clothing

Whether your baby has a full head or hair or is bald a hat is a must, they could still burn either way. Choose a hat which was protect the back of their neck and one that is wide enough to shade the face, if your baby won't keep a hat on apply as much sunscreen as possible!. Also if your baby will wear them, try a pair of UV-protective sunglasses, many parents purchase babiators as they tend to be a good fit. 

You will need to select clothing that will cover your baby's arms and legs which are lightweight especially in the heat. Light colours tend to reflect the heat and keep skin cooler where as darker colour absorb the heat. You can purchase UV50+ swimwear which will protect your little one from the sun's harmful rays.

Do you have any sun safety tips to add to the list? For advice on taking a toddler to the beach check out my previous post here to ensure you are well prepared.

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77 comments

  1. I always take care in the sun, I think the sun tent for the beach is a great idea x

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  2. Sun tents always come in handy, and this is a great post!

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  3. After having four kids, I find myself wondering why I don't have one of these tents! I put a lot of sunscreen on the kids along with sunglasses and hats when we are at the beach. Recently, I have started getting rash guards and board shorts as an extra precaution.

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  4. Good tips. I always try to just stay out of the sun when it is at its hottest, or at least be in the shade!

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  5. Kate Sabin-Burns12 July 2013 at 10:42

    Really important advice there :)

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  6. Great idea the sun is deceptively harsh on the beach :)

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  7. Suncream, especially on ears and back of neck!

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  8. having fair skin i treat my son the same way i treat myself using loads of factor 50! i do need a tent thing though.

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  9. Great tips, I love to find things like hats for the kids to minimise the amount of sun screen and chemicals to put on them in the first place

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  10. The tent is a great idea for the beach. Not only does it protect from the sun, but also from the burning hot sand!

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  11. great tips - especially staying hydrated!

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  12. plenty of water to keep hydrated

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  13. Under the trampoline is cool and shady- turn it into a den!

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  14. Great idea - I just wish my son would sit still anywhere...

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  15. I don't think I stop putting cream on my one year old all day! xx

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  16. Great ideas - specially the tent. My family are a bit too hyperactive unfortunately.

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  17. Jane Middleton12 July 2013 at 22:43

    Thanks for this, very useful guide.

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  18. I always put sun cream on my 2 but think I will be looking out for one of these tents to purchase they are a fab idea and so easy to bring with you when travelling x

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  19. I wish all parents would read this - I see some sad looking bright red babies around :-(

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  20. i hate to see when parents let their kids get sunburnt, it just seems so un necessary

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  21. Take care all

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  22. My sisters kid gets sunburnt - but not red he goes brown, even when he wears sun cream.

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  23. I love those beach shelters, so handy

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  24. I have just liked and shared this story on my facebook page! I have 3 small grand children and thought what a simple but great idea especially in these sweltering temperatures we are having at the moment. Not that I'm complaining .....

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  25. I do all of the above, but also worry that by completely blocking out the sun that my child may not be getting the appropriate levels of vitamin D. What do you think?

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  26. Great blog! @sallylearning

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  27. That tent looks just the thing for the current weather :)

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  28. Good advice people don't always realise that even when overcast you can burn. I didn't really think about a tent but it's a great idea :-)

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  29. Where did you get the tent from, it soo cool

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  30. trevor linvell13 July 2013 at 16:08

    useful tips to remember

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  31. great advice here my sons a redhead so have to be super duper carefull :)

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  32. Thanks some great advice I shall bear that in mind when i`m taking my two boys out x

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  33. Great advice for any parents!

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  34. Sun tents are fab!Great post

    @LaaMoii

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  35. Brillant advice saw a new born in a carry cot on a buggy with no sun shade and a wool blanket over them today. Wish more parents were sun aware.

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  36. I think sun tents are a fab invention, keeps the wind of too!

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  37. great looking tent, suncream and water, essentials. @mandsmanc

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  38. I love the sun tent, such a great idea!

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  39. Although it is important to make sure your child is well protected it is also important to make sure they do get plenty of daylight and sun for their vitamin d so its finding a safe balance that satisfies all needs

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  40. I had one of these types of tents when I my kids were younger and they were great. They could go in and play or go a for nap if they were cranky with the heat as well getting the uv protection.

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  41. You just cant be too careful when it comes to the sun. People still are too lighthearted about using spf and nice to read such a sensible post

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  42. Great advice - I needed straight-jackets, though, to keep my two still long enough to smother in sun cream (they hated it)

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  43. Solid advice, I only wish more parents took this advice.

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  44. we always take a beach tent,so handy for the kids to sleep,get changed or stay cool in

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  45. P Wendy Clayton14 July 2013 at 18:24

    Always good to be able to take your own shady spot with you wherever you go. It is not always easy to find a space in the shade for the little ones, plus the tent makes it like their own special place. We seem to be going through mountains of suncream at the moment.

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  46. Brilliant tips, the tent seems like a good idea.

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  47. My little one doesn't like to drink much but she will drink a lot more if she drinks it through a straw so I always keep a couple in my bag wherever I'm going.

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  48. Great tips because you have to be so careful in the sun. My kids are fair skinned so I have always had to be extra careful!!

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  49. These pop up tents are a great idea and not too expensive

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  50. Some great tips :),I love the pop up tent,such a fab idea to keep shaded in the hot weather

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  51. A sunhat - I always insist everyone wears a sunhat on sunny days. But I love your tent idea!! Ellie x

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  52. GREAT TIPS , ALSO MAKE SURE YOUNGSTERS WEAR HATS IN VERY HOT SUNNY WEATHER PRONE TO HEAT STROKE MORE POP UP TENTS REALLY GOOD IDEA

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  53. we had a tent like this when the boys were younger was great when we were on holiday and you were sitting on the beach all-day

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  54. Great ideas :)

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  55. I spent 2 years in Arizona with our little children and we learned to be very careful indeed in the sun!

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  56. really important things to remember here great tips

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  57. Elizabeth Williams16 July 2013 at 20:27

    Brilliant and very important tips

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  58. I live very near the beach in Cornwall and it's interesting to see so many people now with these tents, and also kids well covered up on the beach in protective sunsuits, hats etc. Great idea because the sun has been absolutley roasting here during the present heatwave and kids would burn very quickly!

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  59. great i bought one of these tents last week they arefab x

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  60. Brilliant tips - especially since the sun is forecast to continue shining

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  61. Can't emphasise the need for sunscreen enough :O

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  62. I have 2 kids and sunscreen and hats is a must for me every time thye are out in the sun! Breaks my heart to see kids not dressed correctly with no hats and no cream :( x

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  63. Great tips, it amazes me how many people do not have a hat on their children when out in this weather

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  64. Stick a film on inside during the hottest part of the day!

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  65. The sun tent is such a brilliant idea !

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  66. Great idea, the tent. And fun for children too.

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  67. My little boy avoids the midday sun and prefers to stay inside - clever boy :) He has a hat but will he keep it on! no....

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  68. great advice

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