Healthy Kids    

Local pharmacists share best products to keep kids healthy

Kids love summer. Our job as parents is to keep them safe while they’re enjoying summer’s sun. So what’s the best sunscreen, bug repellent and sun safety products? We’ve asked local pharmacies for their summer safety must-haves.

Read labels carefully
Lewis Klein
Medicine Chest
408 Blooming Grove Tpke
New Windsor
 Lewis Klein recommends the Bull Frog line of sunscreen for babies and kids of all ages. He says parents should buy a sunscreen of at least SPF 30 and apply whenever any part of the child’s skin is exposed to sun. He tells parents to always read the bottle for directions, but sunscreen should be reapplied every two hours. Lotion that is water repellent should be reapplied every four hours. .

Get some sun exposure too
Bob Caprioli
LaGrange Pharmacy
702 Freedom Plains Rd.
Sunscreen is very important but so is exposing your child to the sun’s natural source of Vitamin D.  “We’re finding that a lot of children, and even adults, have Vitamin D deficiencies because parents are over using sunscreen.” How can parents balance making sure their children get the sun’s Vitamin D while protecting them from its harmful rays? Caprioli suggests allowing the kids to play outside without sunscreen for 15-20 minutes and then cream them up with an SPF 30 or higher.

Stay hydrated
Alan Cohen
The Family Drug Store
524 Broadway, Monticello
Children should drink at least eight ounces of water every hour if they’re playing outside in the summer sun. “Even more,” he says. “If they’re engaged in physical activity.” Keeping your child hydrated is key during the summer he explains. Too busy playing to stop and drink? Allow them to take a sippy cup or bottle of water with them. Make or buy ice pops and surprise them with the treat!

Don’t get burned
John Pelella
Hazzard Pharmacy
290 Main St., Cornwall
Pelella doesn’t recommend any specific brand of sunscreen, but does advise using SPF 15 or higher on children. “Apply sunscreen 30 minutes before you go outside so that the skin can absorb it,” he says. Does sun lotion give your child a rash? Look at the label, it may be from the chemical “Paba,” which some people are allergic to. Pelella also strongly advises that if your child is on any kind of antibiotic that they limit their sun exposure. Many antibiotics make skin extremely sensitive—children and adults can burn easier and even develop a rash. “Apply sunscreen liberally and check with your doctor or pharmacist to see if your antibiotic calls for limited sun exposure,” Pelella says.

Keep the bugs off
Bill Halstead
Vadala’s Pharmacy
62 Vineyard Ave., Highland
Halstead says bug repellent is safe for kids as long as it’s sprayed on clothes and hats, not directly on the skin. He recommends Deep Woods Off “which does a great job of keeping pesky bugs away.” Off offers a whole line of insect repellents, including a clip on mosquito repellent. If you hike this summer or are planning a family camping trip be sure to have some on hand.