Indian summers have always been extreme and the average temperature increases by the year. Did you know that places like Churu, Pilani, New Delhi, Sonegaon, and Akola in India constantly make to the list of hottest places in the world?
While adults suffer endlessly in peak summers, babies go through struggles of their own. As the temperature starts increasing, parents have to seriously start thinking of ways to keep their precious little ones cool during the summer season.
What kind of baby care techniques should you adopt for the summer? How can you choose the right food, clothes, and environment to ease the struggles of the heat? Check this list out.
Stay indoors whenever you can
Keeping away from the direct rays of the sun is one way you can keep your little one protected. Avoid taking the baby out between 10 AM and 5 PM. This is the time the heat waves are the most extreme. If you think your baby needs some fresh air, venture out before 10 AM or after sunset.
If you have to take your baby out in the afternoons, make sure you put on soft, cotton clothes and cover the pram with cotton linen to ensure the little one doesn’t sweat much. Always put the hood cover on in the pram to prevent direct sunlight from making the baby tired and dehydrated.
Keep the baby hydrated
This is something that is terribly important during the summers. When the temperature is high, the body loses its fluids quicker. Your baby may not be able to tell you that he/she is thirsty. Dehydration will lead to crankiness, tiredness, and fatigue. Extreme cases of dehydration can turn fatal.
If you are breastfeeding the baby, then offer it more frequently. For toddlers, keep offering boiled and cooled water, fresh fruits and fruit juices, and tender coconut water often.
Do not worry if your baby’s appetite or interest in food slightly drops in summer. The heat makes it difficult for the little one to chew and digest heavy foods.
Include all kinds of melons, cucumbers, tomatoes, citrus fruits, and greens in the baby food. All these are rich in water content and hydrate the body.
Choose baby clothes with caution
Summers already bring skin sensitivity, heat rashes, and irritation to children. The wrong kind of clothes can make the condition worse.
Always pick pure cotton clothes for summer. This is not something you can compromise on. The problem is, lots of clothes say cotton on the label but if you look in detail, it would be a cotton blend or a cotton mix. These blends and mix have rough and unbreathable materials like polyester and nylon added. These and summers don’t go together.
If your baby has especially sensitive skin, opt for 100% organic cotton baby clothes that feel like a second skin and keep your little one soft and comfortable.
Make sure you pick newborn summer clothes only from brands that know what they are doing. Such newborn clothes have to be free of artificial dyes and naturally hypoallergenic.
Do not overdress the little one too. Do not put on more than one layer of clothing, especially if you take the little one out. Offer periods of nappy-free time during the day. For the daytime, choose cotton nappies over disposable ones. These are softer on the skin. Also, use diaper rash creams generously every time you put on diapers.
Sleeveless clothes, shorts, and loose tops and bottoms keep the baby relaxed.
Make bathing fun
Summers bring with them sweating and stickiness. You can bathe the baby twice during the day if the little one enjoys it. Try picking up bathing toys or create fun rituals around bathing to keep the child excited.
You can use warm water instead of cold tap water to bathe the little one. Make sure you reach out and clean the underarms, back of the neck, back of the ears, and back of the knees.
The skin gets very sensitive after a bath. Use pure cotton towels to dry off your baby’s skin and make sure you don’t rub the skin hard with the towel. Light dabbing will suffice.
Water games are great to cool off in summer too. Fill a wide tub with water, add a couple of floating toys and let your little one enjoy. Always make sure water games are played under the supervision of an adult.
Check for skin infections and rashes
Summers can get overwhelming for the sensitive skin of babies and result in skin infections and rashes. Look for the below symptoms of skin rashes.
- Tiny bumps on the skin
- Red spots that itch
- Tiny blisters
- Rashes that spread along the cheeks, chest, or upper back
- Skin that keeps itching
- Tiredness and crankiness
Using calming aloe vera gel or calamine lotion on the skin can bring down the intensity of mild heat rashes. Make sure you talk to your pediatrician if these symptoms persist.
Change the bedding linen
Summer care for children also includes making changes to the bedding. Have you been using thicker duvets and bed sheets with higher thread counts so far? Once summer comes, it is time to fold all these and keep them away. Invest in thinner, pure cotton bedding linen for your baby’s bed. Use muslin blankets or wraps to keep them cool at night.
If you live in areas where mosquitoes create a menace every summer, definitely invest in mosquito nets for the cots too.
Use baby sunscreens while stepping out
Sunscreens are vital parts of baby skin care regimes. There are sunscreens made of natural, gentle ingredients available for babies and small children. Make sure you use these before you take the little one out. Sunscreens act as a protective layer and prevent UV radiations from directly reaching the skin. Exposure to UV rays can result in sunburn, itch, and redness of the skin.
If your baby is 6 months or younger, then do avoid direct UV exposure as much as you can. You can cover up the baby completely with cotton hooded blankets if you have to take the baby out for a little while. You can read more about UV exposure and its effects on baby skin here.
Keep the house ventilated
When your house lacks proper ventilation, the temperature inside the house rises. You can prevent this from happening by opening out windows and adding lightweight, breathable cotton curtains. These curtains partially block the light but let inside much-needed breeze.
Using air-conditioners all through the day and night is not practical. It isn’t safe either. Hence, plan on proper ventilation before the summer starts.
If you have the luxury of living amidst trees, there is nothing like it. Trees block sunlight and keep your house cool even in the middle of summer. Your baby gets a chance to live amidst nature and that is an added advantage too!
Thanks to global warming, our summers are going to get hotter by the year. Parents have to think proactively and ensure the babies are comfortable and safe during this season. Look for signs of dehydration or heat exhaustion like tiredness, flushing of the skin, weaker pulse, dizziness, and darker-colored urine in your baby. If you can spot one or more of these signs, meet your pediatrician right away.
Try out all the above summer baby care tips mentioned. Always keep a lookout for the baby’s mood. Take signs like distress, irritation, and constant crying seriously and find out if the baby feels overheated or exhausted. Want to pick up 100% organic cotton clothes for your babies? Check out Natures Cuddle. We offer pure cotton clothing for newborns and toddlers at pocket-friendly prices.