Health experts suggest safety measures for pregnant women and babies

This is how not taking the appropriate measures can harm you and your baby if not careful.
Published: Jun. 22, 2021 at 9:22 PM CDT
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AMARILLO, Texas (KFDA) - With recent high temperatures, intense allergy season and severe mosquito season, health experts are suggesting some safety measures for pregnant women and babies.

Professionals at the Texas Tech Infant Risk Center say sunscreen is not recommended for babies who are six months old or younger.

Instead, it’s best to keep the infants out of the sun or wear protective clothing.

After six months old, you can use sunscreen on your baby. Doctors recommend using broad spectrum sunscreen that is at least SPF 30.

“Some of the nice ones are like the Zinc Oxide ones or the ones that you can see because if a mom or a dad can see when it rubs off, you know, that they need to reapply, that’s kind of a cue,” said Dr. Teresa Baker, MD, professor of Obstetrics & Gynecology at Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center at Amarillo.

It is important to remember to constantly reapply the sunscreen to your child, at least every two hours.

Having early sunburns increases the chances of your child developing skin cancer later in life.

“Same for pregnant moms. Their skin tends to be very sensitive to sunlight and any dark spots, or anything that has melanin in it will get worse when you’re pregnant, it will get darker, it will grow often. So, those can be kind of scary to see a big mole start to get bigger or whatever, so you have to be really careful,” said Dr. Baker.

Anti-allergy medication is okay for pregnant women or mothers who are breastfeeding.

It is not okay for children under a year old to use because they haven’t had a chance to develop allergies.

“A lot of the antihistamines can be sedating and you want to be really careful about giving an infant anything that can potentially sedate the baby... So, if they’re having runny noses and things like that, it’s typically a virus that you want to be aware of. Plus, you don’t know how those antihistamines are going to absorb into the baby. So, you have to be really careful about that,” said Dr. Baker.

It is also important for pregnant women and babies to use bug spray because you do not want the diseases mosquitoes can carry.

So, professionals suggest wearing Deet bug spray and applying it to your child using your hands.

“Right now, we’re really seeing a lot of mosquitoes and that type of thing... But if they do get a bug bite or whatever, maybe just a real low potency steroid cream to just put on it and then keep it covered so they won’t scratch it,” said Dr. Baker.

You can contact the Infant Risk Center by calling (806)352-2519 if you have any questions.

Click here for more information about the center.

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