Obviously I loved La La Land (didn’t everyone?!) And thankfully my kids love the soundtrack too since they have to listen to it regularly.
But it’s not the film that has got me thinking today, but rather whether or not it’s safe for my kids to be out in another day of sun today.
Now that we are in August, daycare have implemented their mandatory sunscreen from drop off til pick up time policy, which is resulting in a bit of discussion in our house.
It’s early August and temperatures are below 20 everyday so V1 and V2 are in long sleeves and pants all day.
They have their bucket hats (mandatory) every day so, far as I can tell, their skin will not see any sun as much of the outdoor play area at school is shaded. They also have nap and quiet time during the peak of the day where the UV rating is highest (today it is 3 – moderate).
It has definitely got me thinking. Prior to V1’s birth my better half and I, much like many daunted new parents do, attended an infant first aid course where the topic of sunscreen was brought up. The guidance was along of the lines of ‘be sensible, and don’t overdo it’. For the little ones the skin is so thin so yes it’s at higher risk of sun damage however they also absorb everything put onto their skin more easily. (We raced out and bought a chemical free edible sunscreen to limit chemical absorption but since it was probably more closely related to a food group than sun protection it expired very quickly – not to mention cost a bomb! The only way it would be financially sensible was if I actually started spreading it on toast.) That aside, the instructor’s advice was it is far more sensible to use common sense and cover up if you are out in the peak (but try and avoid being out in the peak all together). Also, let the kids enjoy the sun prior to the UV peak and after it has dropped in the afternoon so they can at least see some sun.
Now I’m reading at https://www.osteoporosis.org.au/vitamin-d and Deakin University at http://www.deakin.edu.au/research/research-news/articles/vitamin-d-deficiency-strikes-one-third-of-australians that Australia is experiencing an increase in cases of vitamin D deficiency, particularly at the end of Winter as vitamin D stores decline into end the start of Spring.
It is mostly being seen in older people and those that are indoors for most of the day but as Osteoporosis Australia notes sufficient levels of vitamin D cannot be gained solely by diet, I worry that our fussy kidlets who staunchly refuse to eat anything we profess to be good for them, might not be not be getting enough because of our caution. (I’m relying on their egg consumption as the primary source since I haven’t got a hope of them eating tinned tuna, they don’t like bottled juice, and our cereal isn’t fortified!)
I’m interested to hear the thoughts of others as when I was out recently with the grandparents they agreed we should let them soak the sun, and very few kids at the park had hats on ( it was a sunny day and it was the middle of the day).
I dont really know the answer but for the next couple of weeks I will let the kids enjoy the warmth, while I keep an eye on the UV index so as to avoid adding too many other things to the daily worry list. Though I suspect this will sit in the bucket along with all of the things for which we as parents might not ever get right !