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Warning: Don’t Put Sunscreen on Infants

While you are slathering on the sunscreen this summer, keep in mind that sunscreen isn’t safe for everyone in your family. If you have a baby younger than six months, you should not put sunscreen on him or her, according to a recent Federal Drug and Administration consumer update.

Babies’ skin is thinner so the chemicals in sunscreen absorb easier into their skin than they do in older children or adults. Also, since their skin-to-body-weight-ratio is greater than that of older children and adults, they are more exposed to sunscreen’s active chemicals and have a greater risk of inflammation or allergic reactions, stated Hari Cheryl Sachs, a FDA pediatrician.

Yet, the outside air is refreshing for you and your baby. If you would like to take your infant outside, avoid exposure between 10 a.m. and 2 p.m. when UV rays are most intense. Also, try to find natural sun protection: shady spots where you are safe from the sun’s harsh rays, pulling down the stroller’s canopy, and the American Academy of Pediatrics recommends dressing your infant in lightweight pants, long-sleeved shirts and hats that shade the neck.

If there is no shade to be found, you can apply a small amount of SPF 15 to small areas, such as the cheeks and back of their hands, but the FDA states you should not use sunscreen with insect repellent DEET.

Keep in mind that babies can get overheated more easily than us since they don’t sweat to cool down their bodies yet. Also, they can get dehydrated very easily. Make sure to give them more fluids if you notice they are urinating less than usual as this may indicate they dehydrated.

If you have any questions concerning skin care for your children, contact Zimmet Vein and Dermatology today to learn more.


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