Whether it's an outing to the outdoor pool or lake-side vacation: during the summer holidays, many families have the time to enjoy the sun for a long time. Their brightness and warmth are beneficial to the body and mind. But too much UV light can also hurt. Sunburns are known to be very uncomfortable and damage the skin. In the long term, this can lead to skin cancer. If you want to enjoy the summer sun without worries, you must protect your skin accordingly, especially for children.
First year only in the shade
Children's skin is much thinner, more permeable and more sensitive than that of adults. "The younger the children, the more vulnerable their skin is to the sun's ultraviolet rays," says Berthold Koletzko of the Foundation for Child Health. Intense sunshine can therefore quickly cause damage, especially in babies and toddlers. The so-called duration of self-protection of the skin does not last more than ten minutes for toddlers, after this short period they are threatened with sunburn.
For this reason, babies should be in the first year of life only in the shade and be protected, even there, by long-sleeved shirts and a wide-brimmed hat, as well as the advice of the pediatrician. In addition, a sunscreen specifically designed for baby skin with a sun protection factor of 50 protects against the sun. A constant withdrawal from the sun, however, has a disadvantage: it prevents the formation of vital vitamin D in the skin. Thus, from the first week of life until the second summer of the beginning of summer, babies should receive tablets or drops containing 400 to 500 units of vitamin D-3 per day, as underlined. the Foundation for Child Health.
Cream – and hat!
With age, little ones gradually get used to the sun. The following applies: All uncovered parts of the body should be generously creamed with sunscreens with a high sun protection factor. For a five year old, about 10 grams of body cream should be applied per application. Regular creaming is also important. Even so-called "water-resistant" products lose a considerable amount of protective effect by contact with water. During subsequent drying or even perspiration, the protection may further weaken.
Just as important as sunscreen are a sun hat and protective clothing. The closer a tissue is, the better it protects from UV rays, as the Foundation for Child Health explains. A plain cotton shirt, tightly woven, therefore has a sun protection factor of 20, with a light cotton garment, the sun protection factor is only about 2 to 10. The color of textiles also plays a role in the protective effect: dark clothes protect better than shiny clothes.
Dangerous midday sun
The skin of children should be particularly well protected from the midday sun. Because between 11 and 15 hours, the radiation is the most intense, the risk of sunburn is higher. Experts recommend to children this period the best way to send in the shade. But beware, even there, the danger is not completely banned. For example, umbrellas can not completely prevent UV rays and even when the sky exceeds 50 to 80% of the rays reach the Earth.
Caution should be exercised, but the Foundation for Child Health warns against children's excessive desire for excessive sunburn: "For the development of a child, regular activities in the open air is of fundamental importance, "says pediatrician Koletzko. "To benefit from the benefits of fresh air and the sun on health, all children must be able to walk and move outdoors at least half an hour a day."