Summer is undoubtedly a season for both mothers and their babies to take extra care. The season ushers with fears and responsibilities. Whether you’ve conceived for the first time or whether it’s your baby’s first summer, healthcare is extremely important.
For first time Mothers
- During pregnancy, the body temperature of a woman is bit higher than normal. Therefore, it becomes a task for first time mothers to tolerate heat. While the sun is oozing out heat outside, pregnant women should choose to stay indoors as much as possible with the air-conditioner turned on. To control the body temperature, one can also use a cool, damp washcloth at the back of the neck, forehead and on top of the head.
- Body tends to lose out on water content in the form of urination and sweat during summers. Therefore, it is very important for pregnant women to keep their body fully-hydrated. Consume as much fluids as possible during summers. Water, juices, milk and sports drinks would replace the electrolytes that are being lost through sweat from your body. However, one has to take care that the body should not be over-hydrated as it may cause fatigued muscles, cramps and also unconsciousness in serious conditions.
- Swimming during pregnancy in summers may help keep your body cool.
- Wear breathable fabrics such as cotton, linen or silk during summer to prevent the heat rash under your abdomen or breasts during pregnancy. Not only this, but also wear sandals with fewer straps. This will allow your foot to breathe.
- Eat things that would keep your body healthy during summers. Consume seasonal fruits such as watermelon, mangoes, oranges, lychee, figs, guava etc. These fruits will give your body extra nutrients to keep it cool.
- Infants have a delicate skin and therefore they are more susceptible to sunburns. Babies under six months of age should not be exposed to direct sun. Parents should protect their babies in summer with brimmed hats and clothes. Also, pick the right fabric for your baby. Dress your infant in light-weight, loose-fitting clothes.
- Like first time mothers, even the babies need to be well-hydrated during summers. Doctors often discourage giving water to babies less than six months of age. Therefore, mothers should feed their baby more often during summers to keep his/her body hydrated. However, for babies above six months, parents can feed them with small amounts of water and fruit juices.
- Keep your baby in cooler atmospheres. However, since it’s his first summer, make sure he adapts to the climate well. Do not keep him in temperatures that are intolerable for him as the baby may also have summer cold. Just make sure that the area where the baby lives has proper ventilation.
- To keep those summer rashes at bay, use skin soothers for your baby. Apply baby powder regularly to relieve your baby from profuse sweating during hot or humid weather. A little rash or sunburn may cause greater misery to the baby. Therefore, make sure that your baby is out of discomfort.
- Use a summer friendly baby carrier. Your baby may feel uncomfortable within minutes if the carrier is made up of a heavy fabric. Use a carrier that is light-weight and made up of nylon. The baby should have confining space while being in the carrier.
Article is shared by Dr. Rita Bakshi, Gynaecologist & Fertility Expert International Fertility Centre, New Delhi