Parents enjoy every new experience with their baby and beach trips can be one of the most exciting new experiences of all. However the first time that you head to the seaside with your little one can also be a worrying occasion. Will your baby like the water? Will they enjoy the sand? Will they get burned by the sun? To make sure that your day is a success, here are some things to bear in mind.
One of the most important things to think about when taking your baby to the beach is how you are going to protect him from the sun’s rays. Remember that it is possible for your baby’s delicate skin to burn even on a cloudy day, so ensuring high quality sun protection is key. Getting sunburn early in life can lead to the development of skin cancer in later years, so make sure your baby is covered with protective clothing including a sun hat, sunglasses and preferably a UV protective cover-up or swimsuit. A high SPF factor sun cream is also vital to protect any exposed areas of skin. Babies under 6 months should be kept entirely out of direct sunlight in a sun tent or in another shady area, while all little ones should not be in direct sunlight during the hottest part of the day between 11 am and 3 pm.
Although it is tempting to dress your little one in a swimsuit, in fact unless they are in the water, it is best to wear something with more coverage. This not only protects from the sun but also from any irritation they may experience from the sand. Long sleeves are recommended, however fabrics should be lightweight to avoid overheating on a warm day. Changes of clothing is a good idea as if your baby’s swimwear becomes wet, they may prefer to get changed into something dry. Beach shoes are also essential if your little one is toddling around as the sand can become very hot and rocks and shells may hurt their little toes.
While many parents worry about their little one’s safety at the beach, if you take some sensible precautions, your trip should be problem-free. When you choose a spot, pick an area a short distance to the water but not too close. A sun tent is a good idea for babies of any age, but especially those who are going to need to take a nap, however make sure that it doesn’t get too hot inside. A sun umbrella would be a good idea to ensure a shaded spot. Babies who can move around independently would benefit from windbreaks being set up to make a safe pen for them to explore the sand freely without fear of them escaping, but you should always keep a close eye on your little one and never let them go to the water unaccompanied, even if it is just a few steps away. Some little ones try to eat the sand, shells or stones and although this should be prevented if possible, if it does happen, simply rinse well with water.