The sun is shining and children love being outdoors in the warm weather – but that doesn’t mean youngsters have to suffer from sunburn.
The next few weeks are set to be hot and, as children return to nursery, staff at the three Bright Kids settings have everything in place to ensure youngsters stay safe in the sunshine.
According to the NHS, babies and children need to have their skin protected between March and October in the UK.
Tina Davis, deputy manager at Studley’s Bright Kids setting said all the nurseries work with parents to ensure children are protected from the sun while they play.
“There are a number of measures we take to ensure children are as safe as possible when they are out in the sun,” she says.
“We always apply sunscreen 20 minutes before the a child goes outside and they don’t go out between the hours of 11am and 3pm unless they can play in the shade.
“Keeping them cool is important so, as well as shade, we encourage water play and provide refreshments.”
Even though the best source of vitamin D is summer sun on our skin it’s important to keep your child’s skin safe in the sun. So, the NHS recommend all babies and young children aged six months to five years should take a daily supplement containing vitamin D, in the form of vitamin drops.
Tina adds: “We educate the children about the importance of staying safe in the sun and they learn to apply their own sunscreen.
“Parents work with us by providing children with a hat, and putting a sunscreen in their bag if they prefer their child to use that rather than the sunscreen we have at nursery.”
The months outside of the school holidays are labelled the “shoulder season” by travel experts and are most popular with parents of pre-school children as not only is it cheaper, but the heat in the Mediterranean is also less intense.
Here are five tips to help keep babies and children safe in the sun:
* Between 11am and 3pm the sun is at its strongest so encourage children to play in the shade. Also keep babies under the age of six months out of direct sunlight, especially at this time of day.
* Cover exposed parts of your child’s skin with sunscreen, even on cloudy or overcast days, and be especially careful to protect their shoulders and the back of their neck as these are the common areas for sunburn.
* Use a sun protection factor (SPF) of 15 or above and is effective against UVA and UVB.
* Cover children with loose cotton clothes, get them to wear a floppy hat with a wide brim that shades their face and neck and protect their eyes with sunglasses that meet the British Standard (BSEN 1836:2005) and carry the “CE” mark.
* If your child is swimming, use a waterproof sunblock of factor 15 or above and reapply after towelling.