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Sun Safety for Children 

Have you ever allowed your children to go to the beach with friends only to regret it?  Maybe your babysitter decided to take her children and carried your one-year old along in a stroller, but didn’t bother to apply sunscreen.   “I’ve seen some Mothers pretty irate at seeing their children returned to them looking like little lobsters after allowing them to go with friends to the beach” says Dr. Michael Hall.  “I don’t advocate murder, but can empathize with parents who lose sleep over uncomfortable sunburned children.”

According to Dr. Hall, there are some simple common sense procedures to follow when protecting your child from sunburn on the beaches.

1.  Babies under a year of age should stay out of the sun.  Dress them in lightweight, light-colored clothing and always cover their head with a hat.   Keeping the baby under the beach umbrella or other shade is a good idea.

2.  Use sunscreen with a PF of at least 15, but don’t use a sunblock with a PF over 4 on babies under 6 months.  Sunblocks contain chemicals that babies under 6 months of age may not be able to eliminate from their bodies. 

3.  Reflective surfaces can bounce the sun’s rays back onto your baby’s skin or into the eyes.  If your child is squinting while in the shade, there is a reason.

4.  Apply sunscreen on older children at least hourly, and use a higher PF on the ears, bridge of the nose and collar bone areas.

If your child returns from the beach with sunburn, here are some tips for easing their discomfort – and keeping you sane.

1.  Run a cool bath with about ¼ ounce of emu oil in it.  Do not under any circumstances put in baby oil, bubble bath or bath salts.  They won’t do anything to help the skin and will in some cases be an irritant.

2.  After the bath, gently pat the child dry with a soft towel.  Apply emu oil as a moisturizer.   Do not use creams or petroleum jelly – these products block the skin and prevent the heat from getting out.

3.  Rehydrate with clear liquids rather than milk to avoid nausea.  Avoid caffeinated beverages like iced tea or colas.  Try diluted Gatorade, water, ice chips, flat ginger ale, or Popsicles.

4.  If the skin is actually red and not just pink you can give a baby aspirin every four hours to help control the pain. 

5.  Make the child stay out of the sun.  Yes, I know, they will whine.  Do you want to listen to the whining now while they sit under the umbrella or tonight while they are in more pain? 

If the sunburn is bright red, if there are blisters, nausea, fever or chills, the child needs to see a doctor immediately.

Dr. Michael Hall and his wife, Alexandra, own and operate Outback Medic Survival Gear for Skin®.  An active couple, they enjoy boating and fishing off the local coast of Ocean City, MD, the "White Marlin Capital of the World”, as well as operating Southern Cross Ranch, the place where Outback Medic Survival Gear for Skin ® begins.

For more information, visit their website at http://www.outbackmedic.com

 

 

        Emu's Zine does not diagnose, prescribe or dispense medical advice.  We report and attempt to educate the public about the possible health benefits derived through the use of emu oil based products and consumption of low cholesterol, low fat emu meat.   This site contains personal testimonies and professional observations.   We encourage people to contact their family physicians regarding any health problems they may have for proper diagnosis and treatment.

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