Summertime, and the livin’ is easy – but in the time of COVID 19, it’s not as easy as it used to be. One thing that has not changed is the need to wear sunscreen.
Children 6 months and older should wear sunscreen whenever they are going outside, even on cloudy days. The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends sunscreen that is SPF (sun protection factor) 30 or higher containing zinc oxide or titanium oxide. You should use a broad spectrum sunscreen on your child that is one with UVA and UVB protection. Apply the sunscreen at least 15 to 30 minutes prior to going outside. Be generous in your application, covering all sun exposed areas including the face, nose, ears, and neck. Don’t forget to apply sunscreen to the feet, hands, and the backs of the knees. You should reapply sunscreen every 2 hours and after swimming or sweating.
You may also wish to buy clothing labeled with an ultraviolet protective factor (UPF). The AAP also recommends sunglasses with 99% UV protection.
Infants under 6 months should be kept out of the sun. Babies should be kept in the shade, under a tree, or an umbrella. They should be dressed in long sleeved, light weight clothing. If there is no way to avoid the sun, you may apply sunscreen, SPF 30 or higher, to small areas of sun exposed skin.
So, as you head out for summer family fun, don’t forget your mask, hand sanitizer, water bottle and SUNSCREEN. Have a great time!
Dr. Meri Schrader