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Baby Care Basics: Baby Sunburn Treatment

Babies are especially susceptible to sunburns. If you suspect your bundle of joy has had a bit too much sun exposure follow these three steps to help her get better.

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You may already know that babies are more sensitive to the sun than we are because their skin is so think and delicate. That's why it's so important for all babies to avoid exposure, regardless of their skin tone-- especially between 10:00 am and 3:00 pm. You can apply sunscreen to babies over six months, but the best approach is to keep them in the shade or covered up if you'll be out for more than ten minutes or so. But if your baby's skin looks pink or is tender after spending time outside, follow these steps. First, if she's under age one, you should call your doctor no matter how mild the burn looks. In infants, sunburn can be more serious than it appears. If she's over age one, see a doctor if she has blisters, severe pain, lethargy, or fever. You can add some soothing baking soda or oatmeal to a cool bath, or hold the cold compress on the burned area, then apply an alcohol-free moisturizer. Infant's acetaminophen or ibuprofen if she's older than six months can help lessen pain, swelling, and itching. Make sure she's drinking enough because she may be a little dehydrated from the heat. She should have her normal number of wet diapers. Most burns heal within a week. In the meantime, just make sure she's protected the next time that you venture out.