You know to keep babies out of hot cars — Children’s Hospital says also beware of hot strollers
“Even the thinnest of cloths or covers over the stroller or carrier can reduce air circulation and create a greenhouse effect in the enclosed space."June 27, 2019
It’s a common sight — baby strollers and carriers draped with blankets to shield and protect infants and toddlers from the elements.
But recent studies are showing this practice to be unsafe, especially as temperatures rise.
“The one thing we do to keep our babies safe may also be one of the most dangerous,” said Purnima Unni, MPH, CHES, Pediatric Trauma Injury Prevention Program Manager at Monroe Carell Jr. Children’s Hospital at Vanderbilt. “Even the thinnest of cloths or covers over the stroller or carrier can reduce air circulation within the travel system and create a greenhouse effect in the enclosed space. This may result in the temperature inside the stroller rising to dangerous levels.”
Unni offers the following tips when using strollers and carriers:
- Appropriate clothing can provide great relief from the heat. Dress children in light, loose-fitting clothing to prevent them from overheating.
- Keep your child in the shade when outside.
- Try to make sure your child is cool during car rides
- Keep your child hydrated. Water is a great tool for lowering body temperature and preventing the onset of hyperthermia.
- Find a stroller that has a canopy and some kind of opening in the back so that the air is flowing.
- Frequently check on your child: When walking or jogging with a child in a stroller, check in every 10-15 minutes.
“If their cheeks are flushed, if they’re sweating, if they’re warm to the touch, that’s probably too hot,” Unni cautioned.
“Good ventilation is important for the comfort and safety of a child, so think about the alternatives to coverings on hot days,” she added. “It’s important to be mindful of the temperatures and it’s especially important to protect your child from the damaging rays of the sun. Use a sun hat and sunscreen.”