Room Temperatures for Babies
Whether you’re blasting the air conditioning or have the heat cranked on high, you’ll find that controlling your home’s temperature is as easy as the flip of a switch. Consequent, the hard part is trying to figure out the right temperature for your baby and their room. It’s challenging to know if the baby is too hot or too cold as they cannot tell you how they feel.
Additionally, the right temperature for one child may not work for another. Just like you, the baby has its preferences. A child that weighs 20 lbs. might require less heat than one that is only seven pounds. So, how do you set room temperatures for babies?
We can gather age-old wisdom from the nursery rhyme of the beloved “Goldilocks and The Three Bears.” You don’t want your infants’ room to be too warm or too cool. Rather, you want the temperature to be just right. A good rule of thumb is to gauge the temperature based on your internal thermometer. If you feel it’s too hot or cold, it’s safe to assume your child will feel the same.
68-74 Degrees Fahrenheit
Experts believe that it’s best to keep the room temperatures for babies somewhere between 68-74 degrees F. To accomplish this, you must set the household thermostat to accommodate. Unfortunately, most people can’t control the temperature in baby’s room only. Don’t put space heaters or a window air conditioning unit in the room if you can avoid it. It’s just too much for their little bodies to handle such direct heating or cooling.
Many people crank the heat because they feel that babies are always cold. However, if you have them sleeping in a room that is too warm, then you are increasing the chance that they will develop Sudden Infant Death Syndrome or SIDS. If you feel the room needs some circulation, then try adding a box or a ceiling variety. Did you know that circulating the air is known to reduce the chances of SIDS?
The only exception to the rule is when a baby is born premature and is still in a fragile state. If the infant is underweight, then increasing the room temperatures for babies to a range of 72-75 degrees F is best. It’s difficult for such a small baby to regulate their temperature correctly. When an infant is too cold, they use their nutrients, trying to warm their bodies, and these little babies don’t have any calories to spare. A simple bump in the thermostat can help them out.
Dressing for The Seasons
Summer weather means that you can wear less, and the same thing goes for your infant. You don’t need to wrap them in blankets or put sweaters on them like you would in the fall/winter months. However, you should keep in mind that if you are in a colder home because the air conditioning is cranked below 70 degrees, a small blanket may be advisable. Also, summer hats can protect their delicate head from a sunburn. They also help them to regulate their internal temperature by keeping their sun off them.
When the weather is cold outside, you need to layer the clothes on them a bit. One of the easiest ways for young ones to lose heat is through their head, and this is especially true if they don’t have any hair. The great thing about layers is that you can take clothes off if they become too warm and add them if they are cold.
Just make sure you remove clothes if the baby is too hot as you don’t want them to overheat. If they get too cold, they can get sick. It’s a difficult balance dressing infants and keeping the room temperatures for babies just right. Socks, hats, gloves, and undershirts are a parent’s best friend, whether inside or outside the home.
What about nighttime and room temperatures for babies? Nighttime brings a whole other layer to the temperature problem. Most babies love the little one-piece sleeper sets that are perfect for the chilly evenings. If you are a family that turns your furnace down at night to save money, then you need to make sure they are well protected. If it’s cold outside, then you should add a onesie or an undershirt with the sleeper.
Avoid Blankets Till 12 Months
Sleepers for wintertime are made of heavier materials to keep them warm. However, in the summer months, you should choose lightweight fabrics that are engineered to help keep baby comfortable. Don’t even think about using blankets on your child until they are past the danger zone with SIDS and are at least one year old. Blankets add a significant risk of suffocation to your child.
Is Baby Too Hot or Cold?
You may have a hard time figuring out if your infant is too hot or too cold. They don’t always sweat as you would, so it’s difficult to gauge. One way that you can know for sure is if the nape of their neck is sweaty. Their little cheeks may flush, and they may become fussy. Additionally, if your baby is too hot, then they may breathe rapidly to cool themselves.
When the baby is too cold, it’s a bit easier to identify. First, their fingers and toes are going to be like ice. Second, they may be lethargic and not wanting to interact like they usually do. Some babies will shiver, and their little gums will chatter. The body shivers to try to get warm, and it’s burning calories. Since the baby doesn’t have many calories to lose, help them out by covering them or adding layers. Dressing them appropriately helps keep room temperatures for babies in the right range.
Why is a baby’s room temperature important?
Why are the room temperatures for babies so important? Well, if your child is too hot, then they can develop a fever. Their system can’t fight off the temperatures as you do. In severe cases, a baby can have a heat stroke from overheating. No, you don’t need the sun to send your blood to scorching levels, it can happen in your home.
If you see that your child has become too hot, then take some layers off them in a gradual fashion. A fan nearby can help to bring things into the proper range also. Never just strip all their clothes or try to wipe them with a cool cloth. Going from one extreme to another is asking for trouble.
Setting room temperatures for babies can be hard to judge. However, after some time and practice, you will get the hang of your baby’s needs. Children become accustomed to their surroundings. If you keep the temperatures on the cooler side, then they will learn to like things cooler.
If you are a bit more “warm-blooded” and keep things hotter, then they will learn to adapt to that environment too. Setting room temperatures for babies is not rocket science. Just make the space comfortable for you, and they will adapt. Though your infant is still developing and have many milestones to hit, they are stronger than you ever could imagine.