How to Keep Your Baby Cool and Comfortable During the Summer Heat

For most people, the summer period means carefree days of unending outdoor activities, whether lying by the pool, tanning on the beach, or planning a summer road trip. While it is certainly a period of fun and exciting holiday activities, new parents should be more concerned about their baby’s safety amidst the heat.

Unlike adults, hot weather can adversely affect infants and toddlers. As such, parents planning outdoor activities with their infants during summer should consider the following:

1. Use a Summer-friendly Baby Carrier

The summer heat, coupled with a confined space, can make your baby hot and uncomfortable all day long. You should find a summer-friendly baby carrier, especially if you intend to spend most of your summer days outdoors traveling. Ideally, you should choose a baby carrier made from light nylon materials instead of denim and other heavy fabrics.

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You should also closely monitor your baby and remove them immediately when their face starts looking flushed. Using water to wipe your baby’s hands and feet or a wet cloth reduces temperature. If you are strolling, consider using a baby carrier with a stroller fan. Click here to check out the endless varieties of strollers with summer-friendly features.

2. Watch Out for the Signs of Heat Exhaustion


According to the CDC, toddlers can easily suffer from heat-related stress because of their small body size, meaning there’s less surface to regulate temperature. With underdeveloped temperature regulation capacity and less sweating surface, toddlers and young kids can easily get heat exhaustion.

Besides the soaring temperature levels, dehydration and humidity also contribute to heat exhaustion in toddlers. Environmental humidity levels above 60% make it difficult for kids to self-regulate, probably because their sweating mechanism isn’t effective yet. Dehydration worsens the situation. Toddlers and infants can’t ask for fluids or voice their thirst. If not promptly identified, heat exhaustion is life-threatening to kids. Below are signs of heat exhaustion every parent should know:

  • Excessive sweating
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Irritability
  • Warm to the touch
  • Red skin
  • Increasing heartbeat
  • High fever but not sweating
  • Lethargic or unresponsive
  • Dizzy or confused

If your baby shows these signs of heat exhaustion, take them indoors or in the shade, remove extra clothing, and cool them off with a wet cloth. You should slowly rehydrate with water or a low-sugar drink and check in with your pediatrician.

3. Use Sunscreen


Babies have thin and delicate skin, especially those under six months, so you should protect them from direct sunlight when they are outdoors. If protecting them from direct sunlight is impossible, especially when swimming, always apply sunscreen. According to the American Academy of Pediatrics, parents can safely apply a small amount of sunscreen to their baby’s skin and face.

You can use sunscreen liberally and often for babies older than six months. Remember to reapply regularly, especially if they get sweaty or wet. Ensure that you use a waterproof sunscreen that is best suited for kids. Quality sunscreen should have a sun protection factor of 15 or more.

4. Stock Skin Soothers

Most infants who sweat during hot and humid weather conditions often develop tiny red bumps, called heat rash, which cluster around the neck, groin, and skin folds. Having skin soothers can help resolve these bumps. Start by removing sticky clothing and apply baby powder to areas with these bumps. You should also keep your baby in a cool and ventilated room.

In the worst-case scenario, your baby can develop a sunburn characterized by red, hot, and swollen skin. Unlike a heat rash, sunburns are painful to touch and can make your baby very irritable. You should consult your pediatrician if your toddler gets a sunburn.

5. Keep Your Baby Hydrated


Even if your baby isn’t dripping sweat or sweating actively, they lose valuable fluids through perspiration during these tough summer conditions. You should watch out for signs of dehydration, which include rapid breathing, restlessness, warm skin, and a flushed face. Parents should monitor and up fluid intake for their baby during summer.

Since babies aged below six months can’t take water, you should replace the lost fluid by nursing frequently and increasing formula intake. Ideally, babies need 50% more breast milk during hot days. Breastfeeding mothers should also increase their fluid intake to rehydrate and ensure an adequate milk supply. Regular sips of water can be given to babies above six months, while those aged one and above can take regular water or diluted juice to prevent dehydration.

6. Time Your Outdoor Activities Well

Timing your summer outdoor activities appropriately also protects your baby from the harsh summer heat. Sunshine and temperatures are at their peak between 10 am and 2 pm. You should avoid outdoor activities with your baby during this period. Reschedule your outdoor activities to the hour before or after this period.

7. Provide Good Ventilation


Babies can overheat and experience heat exhaustion more quickly than adults because of their ineffective perspiration. This explains why kids shouldn’t be left in a parked car or hot room. Unfortunately, many infants and toddlers often succumb to heat stroke after being locked in hot cars for a few minutes. Besides dressing your baby lightly, you should provide good ventilation. Investing in an indoor or stroller fan can help blow out hot air.

8. Pick the Right Summer Clothes

Like adults, your choice of baby clothes directly affects their comfort and temperature during summer. Some cloth fabrics are best suited for the warm weather, and choosing consciously can help keep your baby cool and comfortable. First, you should ditch tight clothing for loose-fitting clothes that cover your arms and legs.

You should also opt for breathable fabrics, like cotton, and clothes with a high SPF level. Complement your baby’s clothes with a wide-brimmed sun hat and sunglasses. Your baby’s dressing at night should be minimal, preferably in light layers. You should also use cotton sheets as they are comfortable to sleep on, even during high temperatures.


Protecting your baby from the summer heat and its damaging effects is important. You should dress your baby right, avoid outdoors during peak hours, keep them hydrated, and increase their fluid levels.