Sun basking is quite comforting, especially during the winter season. Everyone likes it and tries it. Can you allow your newborn child to do the same? Most parents avoid it because they are also aware of the damage UV rays can cause.
Babies have pretty soft skin and they deserve better care. Applying sunscreen on a child’s skin is not an ideal solution because it may cause skin allergies. So, what should you do? Should you prevent taking the baby out in the sunlight? Is it harmful to the child’s health if you take him out to enjoy the sunlight? Continue reading to reveal some important facts about baby basking in the sun!
What are the Benefits of Sunbathing for a Baby?
Sunbathing comes with certain perks for babies. Those perks include the following:
1. Helps in curing jaundice
You should take the child out in the sunlight and expose his butt in the sunlight for a while. It helps in curing jaundice quickly.
2. Better functioning of the metabolic system
Sunlight contains infrared rays which expand help in expanding skin’s blood vessels. Ultraviolet rays also exterminate bacteria. A little sun exposure can help your child in improving the metabolic process. It will prevent rickets and improve the child’s immunity.
3. Vitamin D
Daily sun exposure prevents vitamin D deficiency in babies. It is essential to improve the child’s calcium absorption capacity. Vitamin D is also essential for your child’s overall growth. Therefore, you must take the baby out in the sunlight for a while.
4. Better disease resistance
Your child’s immune system will work much better if he gets ample sunlight. Ultraviolet rays exterminate germs. Fewer bacteria mean reduced chances of bacterial infection. The baby will stay healthy and happy for a long time if he stays away from problematic diseases.
How Does Sun Exposure Improve the Child’s Calcium Absorption Capacity?
Most parents think calcium deficiency is caused by a lack of calcium in milk. That’s a misconception because Vitamin D deficiency is equally responsible for calcium deficiency. Sunlight is essential for producing vitamin D in the body.
Vitamin D aids in absorbing calcium from the food we eat. That’s how sunlight helps in improving the child’s calcium absorption capacity. It might seem cruel to take a calcium-deficient baby in the sunlight because intense sun rays can damage his skin. You should expose the baby’s feet for 5-10 minutes in the sunlight. It will be enough to meet the child’s daily vitamin D demands.
What About Sun Allergy?
Sunlight can damage the baby’s skin. Several factors affect a child’s skin during the spring season. There is a lot of pollen and bacteria during this season. These things can easily affect the child’s healthy skin because his immune system is still quite weak.
You should be extra careful in the spring season because skin allergies are common at this time. Do not expose your child’s face to the sunlight. Pollen and UV rays can cause skin issues.
Enjoy sunbath in the early morning
The morning time is the best time to enjoy a comforting sunbath. Take your baby to a garden and let him enjoy the sunlight in a stroller. It will comfort him a lot and he will get some fresh air. Keep his face in shade and let him absorb the sunlight through his feet.
Do not keep your baby in the sunlight for prolonged periods
Prolonged sun exposure can create all sorts of health issues for the baby. 5-10 minutes are enough to comfort a newborn child. Besides, you should use baby-friendly moisturizer to keep the child’s skin well-moisturized. Thus, you will prevent skin allergies and provide ample vitamin D to the child.
Is It Okay to Bask in the Sun Through a Glass?
This question might come to your mind if you are worried about the UV rays. The ultraviolet light transmission reduces up to 50% when the sunlight passes through the glass. The effects of UV rays further reduce when the child is 4-5 meters away from the glass.
As you can imagine, it does not make a huge difference. You should rather take the child out to enjoy the sunbath. Do it when your baby is 2 weeks old. He will be old enough to withstand sun exposure for 5-10 minutes.
Avoid sun exposure through glass if your child vitamin D deficient
As mentioned earlier, glass reduces the effects of UV rays. These UV rays play an important role in producing vitamin D in our skin. Therefore, the child needs a full supply of UV rays to generate ample vitamin D to meet his daily demands.
What if the child is not vitamin D deficient?
Every baby needs vitamin D whether he is calcium deficient or not. Vitamin D is crucial for a child’s development. Sun exposure is the best way of getting it and the glass prevents UV rays from doing their job.
Mothers should take their baby in the sunlight to ensure the child gets in contact with the UV rays. There is no need to keep the baby in the sunlight for 20-30 minutes. a 5-10 minutes’ sun exposure is enough for a day!
What is an Ideal Time for Babies to Bask in the Sunlight?
Your child should be at least 2 weeks old to enjoy the sunbath. Do not take newborns out in the sunlight because it can affect their health. Prefer the morning time for sun-basking. It is the time when the sunlight seems quite comforting.
Do not take your child out in the sunlight during the morning time if it is the winter season. Take him out during the noon because that’s when your baby will feel comfortable and he won’t catch a cold.
You don’t need to move out of the house for sunbathing:
Adults go to beaches and parks for sunbathing. Our immune system is stronger and we can deal with bacteria and polluted air. Babies are different because their immune system is quite weak. You should choose your home’s balcony to take the baby out in the sunlight.
Choose the length of sun exposure according to your child’s age:
Babies do not need prolonged sun exposure to stay healthy. 5-10 minutes are enough to keep the child healthy. You should increase that sun exposure time as the child grows. A 1-year old baby can easily spend 20-30 minutes in the sunlight. Apply sunscreen lotion to prevent skin damage and protect your child’s skin!
What Precautions You Should Take when Taking the Child Out in the Sunlight?
You should take the following precautions to prevent skin damage:
Do not use glass as a shield!
Most parents keep the window closed so that the sunlight can filter through the window before touching the baby’s skin. They believe it is enough to get vitamin D. That’s not enough because the UV rays won’t be able to turn the cholesterol into vitamin D! Take your baby directly into the sunlight to promote vitamin D production in his body.
Morning or evening time is the best time for the baby’s sunbathing:
There is no need to wait till the afternoon if it is the summer season. Take your baby out in the sunlight between 9-10 am. This time is perfect to enjoy the warmth of sun rays. Suppose you can’t take the child out in the sunlight during the morning time, prefer the evening time.
Babies have pretty fragile skin capsules. Therefore, prolonged sun exposure can cause roughness, dryness, and red bumps on your child’s skin. So, choose the right time for sun exposure according to the suggested schedule in this post.
Give your child a bath after sun-basking
It can be harmful to your child’s skin to give him a bath before sun-basking. Cleaning the baby before sunbathing can wash away the 7-dehydrocholesterol. That’s the material sunlight turns into vitamin D. So, it is best for your child if he enjoys the sun basking before the bath.
Keep the baby’s head covered in the sunlight
Most health experts recommend exposing a baby’s feet to the sunlight. You should never expose your child’s head because he will sweat excessively. The child feels extremely uncomfortable when you expose his head to the sunlight. Exposing feet does not cause any problem. In fact, the child will enjoy sunbath when his feet are exposed and not his head!
Sun basking has numerous benefits for babies. Just like other good things, excess sunlight can also be harmful to a baby. Parents should be a little cautious when taking the child out in the sunlight. Keep his face covered, expose his feet, and choose the sun basking duration according to the child’s health.
Suppose your baby basking in the sun and experiences health problems, you should take him to a doctor. It can be a minor skin allergy or something serious. The doctor will diagnose the issue and offer the right treatment and guidance.