How to Treat a Baby's Sunburn


Your little one's skin is thinner and more susceptible to sunburns than yours, according to Seattle Children's Hospital. So while a summer afternoon may not negatively affect you, it can burn your baby's delicate skin, resulting in a deep pink color and some serious discomfort. Luckily, you can care for sunburn at home, as long as the skin isn't blistered. Keep your baby comfortable until her skin heals -- and next time, seek shade when you're outside with your little one.

Things You'll Need

  • Cold compresses
  • Loose clothes
  • Lotion
  • Offer acetaminophen at the proper dosage if your baby is fussy and in pain because of the burn. The medicine can help take away some of the pain while reducing any swelling that may occur. Just make sure to follow your pediatrician's instruction on the correct dosage.

  • Apply cold compresses to the affected area. You can use wet washcloths or a bag of frozen veggies. Although your wiggly little one may squirm and react to the icy sensation, cold on her skin can help reduce swelling and cool the burning feeling while your baby's sunburn heals.

  • Dress your baby in loose-fitting clothing, suggests Friction can feel painful against tender, burned skin, so a loose pair of cotton pants and shirt, a light sleeper or even a nightgown can help reduce friction and keep your baby cool.

  • Offer your little one plenty of fluids to help prevent dehydration. Burned skin loses moisture faster than healthy skin, so don't be surprised if your baby wants to breastfeed more often or needs more frequent bottle feedings. If she's under the age of 6 months, you don't need to offer water; your baby gets enough hydration from breast milk or formula. If she's over the age of 6 months, try offering water in a sippy cup.

  • Slather on some aloe-based cream for sensitive skin. The cool sensation can help ease discomfort while helping to hydrate your baby's dry skin until the burn has healed.

Tips & Warnings

  • Call your doctor if your baby's burn blisters or she has fever and chills along with the sunburn, the American Academy of Pediatrics recommends.


  • Photo Credit Comstock Images/Comstock/Getty Images
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