Children's Health

Banana Boat sunscreen caused toddler's second-degree burns, mom claims

A mother in Canada is pleading with other parents to be cautious when using aerosol spray sunscreen on their children after her 14-month-old daughter suffered second-degree chemical burns on her face. Rebecca Cannon, of Botwood, had purchased Banana Boat Kids SPF50 to protect her daughter Kyla from the sun despite overcast weather, according to a May 8 Facebook post.

“As the day went on, she got a little redder and redder and the next morning she woke up and was swollen, she was bright red, there were  blisters starting to pop up,” Cannon told CBC.ca. “We immediately took her up to the doctors and found out she has second degree burns.”

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While Cannon acknowledged that she should have used baby-specific sunscreen, she figured that using a child-specific block advertised as alcohol-free to protect her daughter against the sun was better than nothing. 

“I figured just putting it mildly on her face, for some protection rather than having none at all, would be OK and yeah, it didn’t go over well,” Cannon told CBC.ca.

Cannon told the news outlet that her 3-year-old nephew had used the same sunscreen without any adverse effects, but that a doctor treating Kyla said it wasn’t the first case he had seen, and it had the potential to be a severe allergic reaction.

Cannon updated followers on Facebook in a May 11 post that included details from a visit to a dermatologist. She said the doctor confirmed Kyla suffered second degree chemical burns to her face.

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“We are greatly concerned when any person encounters a reaction using our products,” Banana Boat told CBC.ca in a statement. “We have spoken with the consumer and asked for the product so that our quality assurance team can look into this further. Without examining the product, it is difficult to determine what may have caused the problem as described.”

Cannon has been sharing other consumer horror stories online and told the CBC.ca she doesn’t understand how the product is still available for purchase.

“I would have never — in a million years — imagined her to get a burn so severe from sunscreen,” Cannon told the news outlet.