Teach Your Child Sun Protection 101

Chances are you already know about the importance of sun protection. It's been written up and talked about so much. So that you don't get bored and click away, we'll keep this short and sweet, OK?

No matter how much you love the sun, remember that it's like a double-edged sword. Yes, your child gets vitamin D from the sun, but it can also damage their skin cells.

Here's why it's important to protect your child from the sun.

Children have sensitive skin so they need protection from destructive ultraviolet (UV) rays.

Studies show that we get between 50% to 80% of our lifetime sun exposure by the time we are 18. So you can help keep your child sun safe for life.

A child who learns about sun safety is more likely to follow safe sun practices as an adult. So it's important to teach them while they're young and impressionable. You know, before they get to the "I'm old enough to do what I like" years.

So what exactly does your child need to know?

They need to use sunscreen - a product with a sun protection factor (SPF) of at least 15. Even if they are dark skinned. Contrary to what many people think, darker skins can also be damaged by sun exposure.

Be aware that some sunscreens contain ingredients that may irritate a child's skin. Go for simpler formulas if you can.

Also, your child needs to wear protective clothing (like a hat) when he or she is outdoors, even if it isn't very sunny. Ultraviolet rays are still present in weak sunlight.

And lastly, they need to avoid being outdoors when the sun is at its strongest, usually between 10am and 4pm in the northern hemisphere.

That's it. OK, I did promise to keep this short. In return, please keep your child safe from the sun.

Return from Sun Protection to Baby Skin Care