The PedsDocTalk Podcast

13: Summer Safety

May 20, 2020 Dr. Mona Amin
The PedsDocTalk Podcast
13: Summer Safety
Show Notes

Summer is approaching here in the U.S. and although COVID is on our minds, we can't forget how to keep our kids safe in the summer (social-distancing) fun! 

It's also Skin Cancer Awareness Month in May and I want to share how to keep our kids' skin safe in the summer months. Melanoma risk begins in childhood and adolescence and repetitive skin burns in childhood can increase the risk of melanoma later on in life. 

On this episode I talk about sun safety, heat safety, drowning safety, and bug bite safety. I go over some of my favorite products for sun protection and bug-bite protection and discuss ways to keep your family safe during the summer months.

This episode does not go into detail about COVID precautions as things are slowly opening up in some parts of the country. I don't have enough information to make recommendations just yet, BUT will do so here or on my Instagram @pedsdoctalk when I do. 

As a reference, here are my favorite products as mentioned in the episodes. If you head over to my highlight "SAFETY" on my Instagram account @pedsdoctalk,  I discuss more of these and other tips. 

Here are some of my favorite sunblocks for babies/kids. More in the episode on how to apply and how young! 

  • Neutrogena Pure and Free Baby SPF 50
  • Blue Lizard Australian Sunscreen Baby SPF 30+
  • Aveeno Baby Continuous Protection Zinc Oxide Mineral Sunscreen SPF 50 (good for eczema) 
  • California baby super sensitive SPF 30 

Here are some Insect Repellants:

  • DEET: is a safe product used to repel insects. It can be used in babies over 2 months. For children under 12, use bug spray with a DEET less than 30%
  • Considered the best repellant. It is the #1 recommended insect repellant for kids and adults and is safe.
  • Under 2 months, no DEET.
  • 2 months- 2 years: one application a day with DEET <10%
  • Over 2 years, DEET 10-30% with no more than 3 applications a day
  • 10% DEET provides protection for about 2-3 hours and 30% protects for about 6-8 hours. Read the packages for frequency of application instructions. Do not use more than recommended! 
  • Some examples/faves:
    • Cutter’s-7% DEET (What we use for our son)
    • OFF!-25% DEET
    • Ben’s-30% DEET
  • PICARIDIN: approved in the US in 2005, Picaridin is an alternative to DEET and may work as well as DEET. It’s also odorless compared to DEET products. Currently, it’s though that Picaridin has a duration of action similar to 10% DEET.
  • Some examples/faves:
    • SAWYER-Picaridin 20%
    • NATRAPEL- Picaridin 20%
    • Can be used 6 months+ 


  • ESSENTIAL OILS such as citronella, cedar, eucalyptus, and soybean. Likely more short term protection than DEET (less than two hours of protection). In terms of benefits, picaridin and/or DEET provides more protection. 

Here is the AAP rec about sunscreen under 6 months (as mentioned in the recording):

Follow me @pedsdoctalk on Instagram for more!