Summer is nearly upon us and with it comes the annual onslaught of summertime activities. Festivals, trips to the park, days at Disney, concerts, baseball games, and more.
One thing that all of those have in common: an almost certain crush of summer heat. And parents, children, and strollers.
Parents want to get their kids out into the world. They also worry about keeping them safe from the what’s in the world, like the sun.
This is why you’ll see many strollers with a blanket or towel draped over the top. While the parents are trying to keep their stroller occupant safe from the sun, they may actually be doing more harm than good.
Researchers in Sweden have discovered that this “safety shield” may, in fact, be turning the stroller into an oven. Look at this sobering test from the Swedish newspaper Svenska Dagbladet.
They took a stroller out in the middle of the day. Without a cover the temperature inside the stroller reached 71F.
A cover was then laid over the top of the stroller and, within a matter of minutes, the temperature inside hit 93F! This is a dangerous temperature for anyone, especially a young child.
Heatstroke is a dangerous condition that many children, especially babies, can fall victim to. It’s important to realize that merely keeping the cover off of the stroller is not enough.
It’s important to keep circulation consistent in the stroller. Not only should you keep the cover off, it’s also a good idea to remove the back and sides if possible.
You can keep your child safe from the sun in other ways. Sunscreen is always important.
Dress children in lightweight clothes. Shade can be your friend.
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Water. Again, water. The importance of proper hydration for everyone, especially children, can not be overstated.
While it’s important to be aware of this potential stroller danger, Dr. Wendy Sue Swanson told the Today show we shouldn’t panic over the news. “For a hundred years, parents have been draping blankets carefully and safely over their baby strollers to protect them from the sun, and we still want them to do that. But we can be thoughtful about it and this is a good reminder.”