How To Keep Your Baby Cool In Summer Heat: 7 Best Tips
The feel of little toes wiggling in the grass. The sight of colorful flowers. The fun of splashing in a refreshing pool. All these summertime experiences—and so many more—help you have fun and create precious memories with your baby while providing valuable sensory experiences that nurture your baby’s cognitive and physical development. But while you and your baby are having fun in the summer sun, it’s always important to remember safety first. In this blog, we’ll give you some tips on how to keep your baby cool in the summer months.
While you’re enjoying the summer months, it’s vitally important to be sure you’re keeping your baby cool in the summer heat. Sweating is the body’s way of regulating temperature, but because little babies don’t sweat they suffer from heat stroke, heat rash, dehydration and other heat-related illnesses much more quickly than older children or adults. Overheating has also been linked to Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS), making it crucial to take proactive measures for keeping babies cool in the summer.
It’s important that you are alert to the signs of overheating: excessive sweating, flushed skin, rapid breathing, lethargy, irritability, dizziness, and a higher-than-normal body temperature. If you notice any of these symptoms, move your baby to a cool, shaded area, remove excess clothing, and give them fluids to rehydrate.
If the symptoms persist, worsen, or are accompanied by vomiting, rapid heartbeat, or seizures, contact a healthcare professional immediately. Most importantly, trust your instincts to be sure your baby gets the medical attention they need.
Tips to Keep Your Baby Cool in the Summer
Keeping babies cool in hot weather can be challenging, but there are things you can do to protect your baby from extreme temperatures. In this article, you’ll find 7 strategies and solutions to keep your baby comfortable and healthy when the temperatures soar.
1. Dress your baby appropriately
Choosing the right clothing is crucial to keeping your baby comfortable and protected from the sun and heat. Lightweight and breathable fabrics, such as cotton or linen, are key to help prevent overheating. Loose-fitting clothing can also help all your baby's skin breathe. Additionally, you should always put a sun hat or cap with a wide brim on your baby to shield their delicate face, neck, and scalp from harmful UV rays and prevent direct exposure to the sun.
2. Create a cool environment at home
Take steps to safeguard your baby from the summer heat at home. Use fans or air conditioning to cool the air and keep it circulating, close curtains or blinds during the hottest parts of the day to block the sun’s rays, and use a fan to circulate cool air and maintain a comfortable temperature indoors. Close curtains or blinds during the hottest parts of the day to block out direct sunlight, reduce heat absorption and keep rooms cooler.
Additionally, using a misting fan or spritzing your baby with a spray bottle filled with water can help lower their body temperature and give them instant relief from the heat.
3. Provide adequate hydration
Making sure your baby gets enough fluids is important to their well being any time of year, but especially during the summer months. Babies under six months old should not drink water, so offer frequent feedings of breast milk or formula so they get the fluids they need to stay hydrated. If your baby is over six months old you can give them water in a sippy cup to help fight off dehydration.
How can you tell if your baby is getting enough fluids? Look for signs of dehydration such as dry mouth, fewer wet diapers, a noticeable inward curve on the soft spot on your baby’s head (known as sunken fontanelle), lethargy, or fussiness. If you suspect your baby is dehydrated, contact their pediatrician immediately.
4. Limit sun exposure
Staying out of direct sunlight is crucial to protect your baby from heat and harmful UV rays. Try to avoid taking your babies outside in summer during peak hours when the sun’s intensity is strongest, typically between 10 am and 4 pm. When you are outside, keep your baby shaded as much as possible to avoid excessive sun exposure: sit under a tree or umbrella or use a stroller with a sunshade that protects your baby from direct sunlight.
If your baby is six months or older, you can use a sunscreen specifically formulated for babies, with a high SPF and broad-spectrum protection, to give them an additional layer of defense against harmful rays.
5. Cool them down with a bath or shower
As we mentioned before, babies can’t regulate their own body temperature by sweating, but you can help them beat the heat with a cool bath or shower, which can give them instant relief. If you’re on the go and can’t get them into the tub, use a damp cloth to gently cool their skin. However, remember that the water should be cool, not cold, as extreme temperature changes can cause shock or discomfort.
Pro tip: You can use a baby bathtub like the Cleanwater™ Tub to safely monitor water temps while giving baby a cool bath.
6. Use appropriate bedding
The right bedding can help your baby sleep more comfortably at night and at naptime. Using lightweight sheets made from a breathable material like cotton or linen allows for optimal air circulation and wicks away moisture so your baby doesn’t get overheated while they sleep. Bamboo-based fabrics are another great option—they’re naturally breathable and help with temperature regulation, making them an excellent choice for mattress pads and bedding.
7. Keep your baby's room cool
A cool room during the summer months is essential for your baby’s comfort and well-being. Start by monitoring the temperature in the room where your baby sleeps—it should be cool but not cold, ranging from 68-72°F. Run a fan in the nursery to help circulate air and keep the temperature comfortable (make sure the fan is positioned so it doesn’t blow directly on your baby!), and open windows when possible to capture cooling breezes.