Keeping baby cool in summers
Hot and humid climate is very difficult to bear for anyone. Extreme heat can cause dehydration and rashes on the baby’s skin. Here are some tips to keep your baby comfortable in the scorching heat.Avoiding dehydration:Babies who are breastfed get enough hydration from the breast milk. Try to breastfeed your baby whenever she wants (she will be asking for feeds more frequently in extreme summers to quench thirst). Purified, boiled and cooled water can also be fed using a clean and sterilized spoon and a cup (do not use plastic spoons and avoid plastic bottles which are scratched).Signs of dehydration are reduced urination, lethargy and weakness, and poor skin tone. If any such symptoms are observed, you should immediately consult a physician.
In summers, it is good to use soft, pure cotton clothing for the baby. Avoid diapers and use soft cotton cloth nappies. Prefer to stay at home during peak heat hours – late morning and afternoon.
Bathe your baby as often as you feel the need. Avoid use of massage oils and lotions which can cause prickly heat and talcum powder which sticks to skin with sweat. Infants have underdeveloped sweat glands and are therefore more prone to prickly heat and rashes.
Do not stay inside a parked vehicle with the baby. In case you need to wait outside with the baby, move to a cool, airy and hygienic place.
If you have an air conditioner (A/C) at home, always keep the baby away from direct air from the A/C. The A/C should be switched off when the baby is still wet after bath, and can be switched on again after towel drying or dressing up.
Babies older than 6 months can be fed coconut water, buttermilk and fruit juice, besides water (purified, boiled and cooled and not chilled water). Avoid adding sugar to juices and buttermilk. Avoid anything containing sugar or glucose because it can act as a diuretic (increases rate of urination). Older babies and toddlers can also enjoy fresh seasonal fruits.