Overheating significantly increases the chances of SIDS (Sudden Infant Death Syndrome) in babies, so it’s really important to make sure little ones don’t get too hot while they’re sleeping. Getting a baby monitor which has an in-built thermometer can help you keep an eye on their room temperature. According to safe sleep advice from The Lullaby Trust, the ideal room temperature for babies to sleep in is between 16-20°C. However, we know this isn’t always possible or practical, especially over the summer months. Below are some really important things to consider to make sure your babies sleep safely during hot weather.
How to dress your baby for sleep in hot weather
Babies find it hard to sleep during hot weather, and most houses in the UK don’t have air conditioning. This can make it hard to know how to dress your baby on hot nights. Leaving them in just a nappy means they could wake later as night temperatures drop and they get cold. Plus, for many babies, the process of getting into their sleeping bag acts as an important sleep cue and can be hugely comforting.
Avoiding polyester sleepwear is key on warmer evenings. Polyester inhibits the body’s natural ability to regulate temperature which means that overheating becomes a bigger risk. Over 95% of sleeping bag brands in the UK use a polyester wadding, so it’s important to read the small print on the labels to make sure yours doesn’t. Our All-Season sleeping bags are great for warmer evenings due to their 100% natural and uniquely thermoregulating fabrics. Most babies are comfortable in these sleeping bags up to around 26/27°C (in just a nappy underneath) but often UK bedrooms without air conditioning go way above this temperature over summer months.
This is why Pure Earth Collection designed their Tropical Nights sleeping bag – the lowest tog baby sleeping bag on the market. Made from 100% plant-based modal fabric, they’re also naturally cooling as modal is 50% more absorbent than cotton. At just 0.2 tog, they’re the ideal solution for those super hot evenings. And they fit from 3 months to 3 years, so they’ll last three whole summers!
On really warm evenings dress your baby in just a nappy and our Tropical Nights sleeping bag. These sleeping bags are also great down to about 20°C room temperatures – just add PJs in cooler weather. You can find our clothing guidelines for our low tog sleeping bags here.
How to keep your baby’s bedroom cool during a heatwave
Keep windows and curtains closed during a heatwave. Don’t be tempted to open them if the air outside is warmer than the air in your house.
And never to point a fan directly at a sleeping baby. This can be extremely dangerous as it can cause their body temperature to drop very fast and very suddenly. If you use a fan for air circulation in their bedroom then please make sure it’s not directly on your child.
When out and about in buggies
Buggies shouldn’t be covered with a blanket, rug or any other fabrics as this can stop the airflow and increase the temperature inside the buggy to dangerous levels. As mentioned above, hot temperatures increase the risk of SIDS, so it’s important to keep that buggy temperature cool. Stick to the shade as much as possible and use a sun shade on your buggy instead of covering up the opening. Check babies regularly to make sure they’re not getting sweaty or looking hot. If they are, take them out of the buggy to cool down.
Car seat safety in hot weather
Cars can get very hot very quickly in the sun, even when the outside air temperature is comparatively cool. Dress babies in minimal clothing for car journeys in hot weather. Open windows to air the car a few minutes before getting in and beware of potentially very hot buckles. Putting a muslin in the window to block out any direct sunlight is also a good idea on hot days (just open the window a bit, post the muslin trough the top and close the window to secure in place. Make sure the muslin isn’t big enough to cover the baby though and only big enough to block the window). If you’re on long journeys make sure you stop more regularly to check on your little one and take them out of their seat for a break. It’s important not to use car seats as a sleeping area for babies so when you get where you’re going take them out and transfer them to a firm, flat surface for sleep.