Comprehensive Children's Injury Center
Injury Prevention Tips | Sun Safety

Tips for Keeping Children Safe in the Sun

The Comprehensive Children’s Injury Center (CCIC) provides the following sun safety tips to help parents become better informed on injury prevention tips.

  • It is very important to protect babies and children's skin from sunburns.
  • Babies under 6 months have skin that is thinner than other skin and therefore needs even more protection!
  • Most of our sun exposure (between 60-80%) happens before we turn 18 years old.
  • Sun exposure in early childhood and the adolescent years contributes to the risk of developing skin cancer later on in life.  
  • Here are some great tips for children younger than 1:
    • Babies under 6 months of age should be kept out of direct sunlight.
    • Dress your baby in comfortable lightweight clothing that covers their entire body.
    • If your baby gets sunburn, contact your pediatrician immediately.
    • If you cannot keep them covered or in the shade, sunscreen can be applied.
      • Before using sunscreen, apply a small amount to limited area and watch for any reaction
  • For kids older than 1 year old , here are some more safety tips:
    • Choose sunscreen specifically made for children, preferably waterproof.
    • If a rash develops, contact your child's pediatrician.
    • Dress your child in clothing made of tightly woven fabrics.
    • Sunglasses with UV protection are also a great idea to protect your child's eyes from the sun.
  • More sun safety tips:
    • Avoid going out in the sun when the sun is the strongest: between 10 am and 4pm.
    • Use sunscreen even on a cloudy day. The sun's rays can still get through clouds.
    • Look for sunscreen that will protect against both UV-B and UV-A rays for the bet protection
    • Sunscreen should be reapplied often for the best protection.
    • Use a SPF (sun protection factor) of at least 15.
    • Put on sunscreen at least 30 minutes before going outdoors-it needs time to work on the skin.
    • If you child develops a sunburn, keep them out of the sun until the burn completely heals.