Summer suddenly arrived in Munich and in our classes this week we have been talking about how to keep the babies cool.
Research shows that babies have an increased risk of Sudden Infant Death (SIDS) if they get too hot. So what can you do to keep your little one cool?
Where possible keep the blinds down during the day in baby’s bedroom. At night have the window and bedroom door open. Using a fan is recommended though do not put the fan directly on baby.
The ideal room temperature for the baby is 16-20C ; although some days this can be hard to achieve. If using a sleeping bag for your baby make sure that it is a tog that is recommended for summer, and that they wear thinner nightwear underneath.
Making sure your baby has enough fluids.
On those warmer days we get thirsty, so it follows that our babies do too. If you are fully breastfeeding make sure you increase your fluid intake for yourself, whilst also taking into consideration the extra breast feeding you will be doing. Fully breastfed babies do not need any extra water until solids are introduced, but they will need more milk from you. If you are bottle feeding then you can give your baby a little cooled boiled water to quench his or her thirst in addition to their usual formula intake. On those warmer days and nights you may also find that your baby wakes more often as they are thirsty.
When you are out and about.
On these lovely summer days you want to be outside with your little one. Not only do you want to protect your baby from the sun you also want to make sure they do not over heat. Where possible avoid going outside in the midday sun, or if you are out try and find some shade. When protecting your baby from the sun use a a clip on parasol or sunshade for your pram; not only does this protect your baby from the sun but also keeps your baby cooler. Do not cover the pram with a blanket to protect them from the sun , as this can lead to over heating and increases the chance of SIDS.
Travelling by car
When travelling by car try and keep the car as cool as possible on hot days. Use sunshields on the windows, dress baby in cool clothing and use the AC unit to keep the car cool. If you are on a long journey make sure you take regular breaks so that your baby can be removed for the car seat and have a little time to kick around.
Sun Safety Tips
It is so nice to be out in the sun, it is a real mood booster and a natural source of vitamin D. But it can also be an enemy to us and our little ones.
Keep your little one out of direct sunlight. Make sure they are wearing a sun hat ( a 50SPF hat is ideal and there are many on the market). These are essential if your bay is in the carrier. Make sure any exposed area of skin has suncream applied, (and don't forget the bottoms of the feet). Re apply sun cream every two hours.
If your baby is old enough to go swimming make sure that if you are outside they have a sun hat, and a 50SPF all in one bathing suit.
When at the beach consider purchasing or renting an umbrella or sun protection tent for you baby to lie under.
Mosquitos and Ticks
In Munich there are many mosquitos in the evening. Like us some babies seem to be attracted to mosquitos and some not. Consider purchasing a mosquito net to cover the kinderwagon. Many mosquito repellents are not safe for little people -read the instructions; also be aware that some are not advised to use whilst breastfeeding. Other options are mosquito patches that you can insert into the kinderwagon or attach to your clothes. Also consider a mosquito net on the bedroom window to prevent you and your baby being bitten over night.
Ticks are carried by the deer, and have the ability to give humans Lyme's Disease. After a day outside check you and your baby for ticks. If you find one carefully remove, it is advised not to use tweezers. Put some antiseptic cream or tea tree oil over the site. Take note of the day you removed the tick. Signs of Lyme's Disease can appear between 10-21 days after the tick was found, though often difficult to recognise in babies. Always check with your kinderarzt if concerned.
FINALLY - DON’T GET DISTRACTED
A summer safety tip that can apply year-round. Don’t get distracted when you are out- phones being our biggest distraction! You need to be all eyes on these little people, especially when they start to move.
ENJOY YOUR SUMMER