Thursday, July 19, 2012

How to Protect Babies from Overheating

Over-bundled babies concern me more than babies who may be a little bit “chilly”—overheating can lead to unnecessary fever evaluations (checking blood, urine and spinal fluid) because of elevated body temperature as well as serious medical issues. In fact, over bundling and excessive overheating is a risk factor for unexpected infant death. Summer is a time to think about the appropriate amount of clothing for babies and toddlers.

Here are some tips to avoid overheating:
  1. Shade, shade, shade. Try and stay in shady areas as much as possible when outdoors.
  2. Babies should be in lights and loose clothing with only one light layer—with more clothing that, baby wouldn’t feel comfortable. If you’re wearing a tank top, baby can wear a baby t-shirt. Don’t worry!
  3. When baby is in the car, make sure it’s cool. NEVER leave a baby in a car alone and ALWAYS either use air conditioning or have the window down on a hot day.
  4. Stay hydrated.
  5. If your home does not have air conditioning, and it’s super hot outside, visit a public air conditioned space (hello supermarket and shopping mall!) or seek community shelter.
  6. Make sure to share these recommendations with anyone who may care for your baby.
  7. Oh, and couldn’t end this posting without suggesting you have some Sassy, safe water fun! Read this oldie but goodie from our One Sassy Doctor archives.