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In adults, sunburns are painful, and cause tissue damage that can lead to skin cancer. But in babies, sunburns can be a medical emergency, causing dehydration, high fever, blisters, infections, chills, and heatstroke, not to mention vastly increasing their lifetime skin cancer risk.
Babies are not only likelier to become seriously ill from sun overexposure, but also more apt to develop sunburns: their sensitive skin contains less melanin, the pigment that gives our hair and eyes their color and offers some sun protection. In short, parents must do everything they can to keep babies safe from sunburn.