School is almost out or in some cases ended today; the fact is our children will be spending more time outdoors with spring and summer in the air. This is why it is extremely important that we protect them from the harmful rays of the sun. It can take as little as 15 minutes in the sun for your child to become burned! It can also take up to 12 hours before you see any signs that an actual sunburn has occurred.* It's important to remember, that the clouds DO NOT block these harmful rays. Even during cloudy and shady days; your child can still get a serious burn.
According to Dermatologist, Dr. Steven Wang, "severe sunburns as a child certainly increase an individual's risk for developing skin cancer". To further that, using precautionary sun protection reduces the risk of skin cancer by 72%.**
Here are some easy ways to prevent your child from getting sunburns. In addition, should a sunburn happen; we want you to be prepared to help treat your child with several natural remedies.
How to Prevent Sunburns from Happening****
1. Seek Shade - UV rays are strongest and most harmful during midday, so it's best to plan indoor activities then. If this is not possible, seek shade under a tree, an umbrella, or a pop-up tent. Use these options to prevent sunburn, not to seek relief after it's happened.
2. Cover Up - when possible, long-sleeved shirts and long pants and skirts can provide protection from UV rays. Clothes made from tightly woven fabric offer the best protection. A wet T-shirt offers much less UV protection than a dry one, and darker colors may offer more protection than lighter colors. Some clothing certified under international standard come with information on its ultraviolet protection factor. See Le Top, Prodoh, and Southern Point items above.
3. Get a Hat - hats that shade the face, scalp, ears, and neck are easy to use and give great protection. Baseball caps are popular among kids, but they don't protect their ears and neck. If your child chooses a cap, be sure to protect exposed areas with sunscreen.
4. Wear Sunglasses - they protect your child's eyes from UV rays, which can lead to cataracts later in life. Look for sunglasses that wrap around and block as close to 100% of both UVA and UVB rays as possible.
5. Apply Sunscreen - if your child is old enough, use sunscreen with at least SPF 15 and UVA and UVB protection every time your child goes outside. For the best protection, apply sunscreen generously 30 minutes before going outdoors. Don't forget to protect ears, noses, lips, and the top of feet.
Natural Remedies for Treatment of Sunburns***
1. Ice - wrap an ice pack or a bag of frozen veggies in a soft towel and apply to the burn. Never place ice directly on skin as it can cause frostbite and more damage.
2. Cool Water - a cool (but not too cold) bath, shower, or moist compress takes away heat and pain. Don't scrub skin or use products like bath oils, soap, or bubble bath.
3. Aloe Vera - the gel from inside the cactus plant eases discomfort, speeds healing, and moisturizes skin. Either split a plant leaf and apply the sap directly on skin, or buy pure aloe vera gel at your local drugstore.
4. Honey - the sticky stuff's been used as a topical burn salve since Egyptian days. "Studies suggest it may work better than some antibiotic creams at speeding up healing, reducing infection, and minimizing pain, "says Kathi Kemper, M.D., author of The Holistic Pediatrician.
5. Oatmeal - finely ground oatmeal (sold as colloidal oatmeal in drug stores) works as an anti-inflammatory when mixed with bath water. Make your own by pulverizing a cup of instant or slow-cooking oatmeal in a blender or food processor until it has a smooth, fine consistency. Pour into tepid bath water and soak.
6. Witch Hazel - wet a washcloth or cotton gauze with this anti-inflammatory astringent and apply to the skin three or four times a day for 20 minutes to minimize pain and itching.
7. Milk - place a washcloth or cotton gauze soaked in cool milk on the reddened area to create a protein film that eases discomfort and reduces heat.
8. Baking Soda or Cornstarch - soaking in bathwater mixed with baking soda or cornstarch can relieve inflammation and itching.
9. Cider Vinegar - acetic acid vinegar alleviates pain, itching, and inflammation. Pour one cup of white cider vinegar into tepid bath water and soak.
10. Coriander Oil - studies suggest rubbing this essential oil onto sunburned skin may reduce inflammation.
Protect Your Child with Youthful Cotton
At Youthful Cotton, we are committed to helping you with clothing options that help prevent sunburns, but also reduce the risk of cancer in the long run. Our collections include a variety of items that help provide a barrier of these harmful rays
We all know that within 6 months, there is no use of sunscreen on babies. This leaves us with a significant challenge on how to protect our littlest of little ones. BullRed provides stylish fishing onesies that feature long sleeves that can be rolled up for the hotter months. They are vented and allow for your child to be comfortable in even the most humid conditions. They also make for fantastic beach gear! They are available for both boys and girls as well as a variety of colors. Available 3M - 24M.
Prodoh fishing shirts are becoming the staple of every little guy or gal's closet. The solid shirts provide for UPF50+ protection while the Gingham shirts and dresses are UPF20+. In addition, these shirts are breathable, quick drying, durable, and feature the "get back here" loop. There is literally a color for every child. They can be paired with Prodoh's angler shorts and belt to offer a complete look that transitions from the beach to the evening dinner. In addition, they serve as a fantastic cover up during the vacations to the beach or trips to the pool. Available 12M - Youth Small.
Le Top provides a variety of options for SPF bathing suits for both boys and girls, focusing on 12M to 5/6. These are the perfect solution to all the summer afternoons spent at the pool. Make sure your little one is protected with adorable options.
Your little guy has moved on from the babyish bathing suits of past and has his eyes on being a more sophisticated grown young man. There are still ways to protect his skin. Southern Point Company offers a variety of SPF protected wicking shirts that are the perfection solution of every day wear to the pool. These can be paired with the Water Activated Greyton Swim Trunks for a complete look. Available 6T - 12T.
* According to the CDC
** According to the Cleveland Clinic
*** Source: Parents.com, Jeannette Moninger, 10 Natural Remedies for Sunburns
**** CDC: How Can I Protect My Children from the Sun