Holiday and Summer Essentials

By Katherine Whitby, 18th July 2018


What an amazing summer we are having! The warm weather can bring more accidents as our little ones have fun outside. Most accidents are just part and parcel of childhood, with the inevitable bumps and bruises. However, in A&E rather than a quieter summer period after the bugs of the winter months, are we are having busy time at the moment with lots of injuries.

So, it is best to get prepared ideally by doing a First Aid course but also to be equipped at home, when you are out and about and of course going on holiday.


First Aid Kit for when you are out and about / on holiday:

 Ideally it’s great to have some bits to hand in the car and when travelling in your nappy bag, kiddies bag or whatever bag or handbag you take out with you!

  • Sticky plasters in various sizes and shapes – children friendly ‘Mr Bump’ or similar are great!

  • Non-adherent absorbent dressing

  • Bandage 

  • Blunt first aid scissors

  • Adhesive tape

  • Sterile gauze to clean a wound – clean water is a good start when cleaning a wound and usually enough.

  • Insect repellent – check age appropriate.

  • Antihistamine cream to help soothe insect bites and stings – usually only suitable for children over 2.

  • You can buy clip on a mosquito repeller which are great and transmit noise (silent to us) to keep them away. Great if your little one is too young for insect repellent.

  • Remember in treating any burns cool water is the best possible treatment

  • Aloe Vera Gel – fantastic for hot and bothered skin from the heat, sunburn, superficial burns, bites, bruises. At home keep it in the fridge as when chilled it is amazing!

  • A gel cool pack to keep in the fridge – choose one your child will like e.g. peppa pig ‘bruise soother’ to help with co-operation! It can be applied to bumps to relieve swelling. A packet of frozen peas is just as good, but wrap it in a clean tea towel as direct contact with ice can cause a cold burn on skin.

  • Piriton for children – for children over 1 year, liquid anti histamine for MINOR reactions which is good for bites, irritated skin.

  • Thermometer – digital or tympanic are the most reliable

  • Paracetamol for children – pain relief or to help a temperature

  • Ibuprofen for children – pain relief or to help a temperature, helpful for bruising and swelling as it is an anti-inflammatory.

You can just make a little First Aid kit in a zip up bag or I highly recommend First Aid Kits by Baby Aid. A great story too as Baby Aid was started by a Mummy who attended one of my early First Aid courses!


Tips for Flying:

  • Check with the airline what they can offer you in terms of space, a bassinet, warming food/ milk, anything you might need!

  • Have your little one sucking on landing and take-off to help with the pressure in their ears – breast/ bottle feeding, dummy, eating... whatever works for you and is age appropriate

  • Take sachets of Paracetamol and/ or Nurofen, in case they are in discomfort with pain in their ears

  • Take spare clothes – for you and them, spare nappies, muslins and comforters

  • Mini books, sorting toys, upload to your phone or iPad their favourite programmes to keep them entertained/ distracted!

  • Check latest advice on taking baby milk and foods through security to avoid tears (yours and theirs!). You can buy most stuff once you are through to the other side

  • Be wary of the plane staff heating things up it can come to you very hot! Not good for safety or when they are starving!

  • Try not to worry about noise from your little one disturbing other passengers. It only makes you stressed which your little one picks up on and makes them worse. Babies on planes is part of travel and other passengers just have to lump it. You travelled kiddy free once and I bet you were patient?! They can switch off, but you can’t so look after yourself

  • If you little one sleeps don’t turn on a movie – sleep! You don’t know how long it will be for or when they or you will sleep again so take advantage!

  • Try not to stress about time differences, sleep times and jet lag. Easier said than done I know but you can’t predict how they will sleep in an unfamiliar environment – plane or where you are staying or manage jet lag or time differences. Once you are at your holiday destination you can put familiar things in place and all unwind into the holiday




Emergency Contacts

If you are going away on holiday check out all the emergency contacts before you go – I never used to before having kids! Have these to hand in your bag and also pinned up at home, make sure babysitters and grandparents know them too!:

  • Ambulance 999 in the UK, 112 in Europe or check for other countries if going abroad

  • NHS 111 for free telephone advice 24 hours a day

  • GP details whether at home or abroad

  • Local A&E department whether at home or abroad Accident Prevention and Home Safety Remember to have a good look around where you are staying on holiday, with friends or family for any hazards, in particular:

  • Kitchen – anything sharp, cleaning products, oven doors…..list goes on!!

  • Bathroom

  • Stairs

  • Steps outside

  • Lose flexes they may like to pull or chew on

  • Blind cords hanging down

  • Water – ponds, swimming pool

  • Glass - doors or tables

  • Corners – prominent edges or corners they could bang their heads on


Holiday Makers

Remember friends or family, or those around you who do not have young children will not be in the same red alert state you be wary of medication they could reach, hot drinks, alcohol (!), hot hair straighteners, gates left open...


Managing the heat

While it’s amazing to have the hot weather, it can also be tough on little ones. Things that can help are:

  • A fan - at a distance, not too close

  • Aloe Vera gel as mentioned above

  • Just wearing a nappy or a sheet sleeping bag at night

  • Be very careful not to cover prams, push chairs, car seats or slings with muslins or any kind of covers. You are admirably trying to keep out hot sun but babies are struggling to manage without enough air circulating. Where possible, use sun hats, shade or ensure there is good ventilation. There is a new generation of sling covers which crazily are black and are thick fabric and are causing babies to overheat

  • Your little one may want more fluids due to thirst, say little and often. If fully formula feeding you could give water in between feeds, breast milk will adjust to the heat to have a higher water content, water in a cup, if they are having food then ice lollies (you can make great home made ones), cucumber and melon are a few of the great refreshing foods



Enjoy yourselves!

Having said all of this of course it is so important you get to unwind and relax - as much as you can with little ones!!! Be prepared, get things in place and then you can enjoy your holiday and making precious memories.

Think there is even more I could add but this truly is plenty for now! Does anyone else have any top tips to add for holidays or things to keep at home?

Have a wonderful Summer and holiday, Katherine x


Would you like to do a First Aid course?

I offer relaxed and friendly courses in the comfort of home or at handpicked venues. The team of experienced nurses are passionate about teaching CPR and choking techniques, accident prevention, first aid and managing childhood illnesses. The courses include lots of chances to ask questions and are the perfect opportunity to learn vitals techniques and tips galore in a social way! Babies are always welcome.

This information is for general information only and should not be treated as a substitute for medical advice given by a doctor or any other health professional. Baby Steps is not responsible or liable for any diagnosis made or actions taken by a user based on this information.


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