baby

Eight steps to make sure your baby is keeping cool this summer.

Fujitsu
Thanks to our brand partner, Fujitsu

All three of my children were born in winter so when summer arrived I was a little thrown by just how to deal with a baby and a hot, sticky, humid summer’s day.

I was used to layering and blankets. Tucking them up in sleeping bags and pram liners. I was unsure of just how to make my baby comfortable, and worried that they’d be too hot or get dehydrated.

What I found was that the messages were confusing.

Keep your baby cool – but not too cool. Avoid the sun, but make sure they get Vitamin D. Don’t cover the pram, but make sure they don’t get overheated.

The fear with our little ones is that babies are sensitive to extremes in temperature because they can’t regulate their internal body temperatures well and are prone to overheating.

We have to be careful for them.

So what do you do?

Well three kids later I’ve finally worked out what’s cool and what’s not when it comes to keeping your baby cool in summer.

1. They need to sleep in a room where the temperature is cool and comfortable.

Experts advise that setting the room temperature around 18°C  encourages good sleep. “People tend to set their ambient house or bedroom temperature a little higher than is actually optimal for sleep,” says Matthew Walker, a professor of neuroscience and psychology at the University of California, Berkeley told The Australian.

He said that in order to sleep the body’s core temperature needs to drop by about two to three degrees. “If our core temperature is too high, the brain cannot easily make the switch from being awake to being asleep, or create the best quality sleep.” A study published by Current Biology has shown that by sleeping in a cooler environment we don’t just fall asleep quicker, but we stay asleep for longer. Just what we want our babies to do.

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"Studies have shown that by sleeping in a cooler environment we don’t just fall asleep quicker, but we stay asleep for longer". Image: iStock.

2. Dress your baby appropriately.

For bed time if your baby is in a light sleeping bag then dress them in light clothing underneath – just a nappy and onesie. Remember the old saying - dress them in “one more layer than you’re comfortable in.” During the waking hours stick to cottons and light short sleeved onesies.

3. Dress your cot appropriately.

Use only cotton bed sheets for your baby’s bassinet or cot and remove that waterproof mattress cover. It will make them sweat.

Use only cotton for your baby's bed. Image: iStock.

4. Make sure your pram is ready for summer.

Remove those winter pram liners, and make sure you don’t cover the pram ever with a cloth. While you might think you are protecting your baby from the sun, in fact it can reduce circulation and can have the effect of creating a furnace-like heat within the pram.

5. Increase fluid.

While breast milk contains all the water a baby should need if the weather is extremely hot you can increase your baby’s fluids by giving them water between feeds. It should be pre-boiled and cooled to room temperature but keep in mind water cannot replace breast milk or formula.

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6. Cool down the bath.

A nice cool bath at bedtime will help get that body temp down and help your little one drift off to sleep. Temperature always suggested for this is 37°C.

A nice cool bath can work wonders. Image: iStock.

7. Watch out for signs of overheating.

Signs of overheating can be sweating and feeling hot to the touch, your baby might have a rapid pulse, be red in the skin and be restless or have shallow breathing.

8. Air-condition your home.

On really hot days sometimes its easier to just keep your baby at home if you can.

If your home has ducted air-conditioning, you can be assured that the temperature controlled environment will keep them comfortable. Ducted systems offer homeowners a discrete and flexible whole home solution where homeowners can control multiple rooms or the entire home using the one system.

We all know how temperamental our weather can be so a reverse cycle system will allow for pre-programmed temperature settings for different times of the night or day and can be adjusted depending on the weather outside. Keeping cool this summer will keep your precious newborn happy and we all know – happy baby – happy mum.

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