Baby Skin Care…
Caring for the baby’s skin is a parent’s responsibility
Thus, in this article we will cover:
- Caring for baby’s skin
- Common baby’s skin problems and treatments
- Helpful tips for dealing with baby skincare
What Baby Skin Care Means
Skin is a baby’s first line of defense against the outside world.
Therefore, caring for your baby’s skin may require special attention and protection to keep it healthy.
Although this may sound complicated, the important thing to remember is to maintain proper hydration of the skin at all times.
The best way to baby’s skin care is to follow the “less is safer” approach – especially with newborns.
Also, it may not be a good idea to use adult skincare products on your baby.
Baby’s skin is also prone to allergies caused by using products that are laden with harsh chemicals
You should also avoid soaps, chemical shampoos, harsh cleansers, and excessive bathing.
So how do you take care of your baby’s skin?
Let’s find out together!
How to take care of your baby’s skin
With a wide range of products available and different opinions of different people, how to care for a baby’s skin is an issue that may seem complicated and confusing.
Here is a list of baby skincare tips to keep your baby’s skin healthy:
Needless to say…
Cleanliness is very important for a baby’s health.
With an immature immune system, your newborn must be protected, in particular by promoting a healthy environment (and not sanitized) and by ensuring good level of hygiene.
A newborn baby’s skin usually has a white wax-like substance called vernix that peels off slowly during the first few weeks after birth.
Keep in mind, Mommy…
This natural peeling procedure requires NO help in terms of rubbing or applying creams to the skin.
It may be sufficient to clean the baby with a wet sponge during the first weeks after birth.
.. and, of course, paying special attention to the area around the baby’s mouth and the diaper-skin contact area.
Excessive bathing can strip a baby’s skin of its natural oils and lead to dryness and flaking, especially when using bath gels.
Therefore, a spring bath 3-4 times a week may be adequate. Make sure to use mild soap and lukewarm water for your baby’s bath.
Not too cold, not too hot..
The baby’s room temperature should be warm enough to protect him from the cold.
Keep in mind to always use a soft sponge and cotton towels to gently dry the baby’s body.
3. Use natural products
Babies have very thin and fragile skin.
After birth, the baby’s skin requires time to get used to the new harsh external environment.
Therefore, natural and organic baby products that are free of any chemicals are a safer option.
….scented or harsh antibacterial ones that may cause rashes and dryness.
What to consider:
- It is recommended to use products specially formulated for babies such as mild baby soap, non-tear shampoo, and gentle lotions.
- Pay attention to the development of allergic reactions in your baby’s skin to the products used and seek medical attention when needed.
4. Cover baby, but not too much
The Baby does not yet regulate the body temperature and tends to cool down quickly.
This is why it is essential to keep it warm before going out to the park or during a nap.
Fighting the cold, however, should not be a reason to over-cover your child.
To avoid having heat rash, choose warm but comfortable clothes, in which he can move easily.
5. Skin problems
Some babies may develop baby acne, which is different from adult acne.
Others may develop eczema or atopic dermatitis, which is a skin condition that can lead to dry, itchy, thick, and sometimes scaly skin with red spots.
…some kids may have some irritation from specific kinds of food (Read more details)
Diaper rash and cradle cap are also common among babies as well
See the common baby skin problems section below
6. Baby massage
Massaging is the greatest way to bond with your little one. Yep!
Gently massaging the baby’s skin with natural oils helps nourish and moisturize the baby and prevents dryness.
- Coconut oil is commonly used and highly recommended
- You should avoid using commercial oils that usually contain fragrances and chemicals that may harm a child’s skin and cause allergic reactions.
7. Exposure to sunlight
It is not recommended to expose a baby’s delicate skin to direct sunlight..
… especially during the first months of birth, as this may lead to skin sunburn.
Choose suitable clothes..
When out in the sun, it is wise to keep the baby covered appropriately with long-sleeved clothing, full pants, and hats.
You can also use infant-safe sunscreen on exposed skin.
8. Cotton clothes
Babies are prone to rashes due to sweating in the folds of the skin.
- The baby should wear loose-fitting cotton clothing as it is soft, more absorbent, and comfortable.
- Avoid using clothes made of synthetic materials as they can be abrasive and can cause allergic reactions.
- You can choose to layer more clothes according to weather conditions.
Moisturizing is a vital step in baby skincare, as the baby’s skin is prone to drying out.
Applying a moisturizing baby lotion after showering can help lock in moisture and keep skin plump and hydrated.
Alternatively, ointments or other baby preparations can also be used.
10. Gentle Laundry Detergent
It is recommended that you always wash baby clothes and bedding covers before using them.
- It may look clean, but it makes sense to wash it once with a gentle, unscented detergent or powder to get rid of any germs and soften it.
- Keep in mind that the baby’s clothes should be washed separately from the usual bed washing.
Common Babies’ Skin Problems
Few months after birth, many babies suffer from different types of skin issues. Such as dry skin, baby rashes, eczema, birthmark, or oily spots that appear in dandruff.
Here are the most common issues and how to deal with them:
Eczema is known as a red rash, and usually, it appears in the form of irritated skin and condition of dry on the face, scalp, elbows, and knees.
Gentle moisturizers and safe soaps for the child’s skin may help reduce skin itchiness.
But if the condition of eczema on the skin worsens, you should consult a specialist.
According to the American Academy of Pediatrics, most children who develop eczema clear up gradually by age 4.
Possible cause of Eczema:
- Heredity: Genetics and immune system dysfunctions can be factors that contribute to eczema in children.
Difficulties related to skin permeability and environmental symptoms are the reasons that can cause such skin conditions and irritations.
- Related illnesses: The risk is higher if the parents have previously had asthma or hay fever.
This supports the theory that other diseases increase a person’s likelihood of experiencing eczema.
- Allergies: It is a known fact that eczema is a condition that mixes dry skin with sensitivity.
The early symptoms of eczema in children can be noticed through the dryness of their skin and the rash usually appears and spreads to the face, legs or arms.
And this sensitivity can be transmitted through breastfeeding, as the mother’s food habits may be responsible for eczema.
Treating the Eczema in Children:
- Treatment becomes easier if a careful examination is performed by a skin specialist. He or she will physically examine the rash and analyze a detailed medical history to ensure that the child has any diseases that may lead to the occurrence of this rash. Initially, a dermatologist may recommend mild preparations that can control eczema.
- Your dermatologist may also advise you to apply low-steroid creams regularly. Depending on the results of these treatments, your specialist may conduct a test to find and verify the cause of the allergy. Fortunately, the disease can be controlled because it is not contagious.
- Medicines and treatments are prescribed based on their potential to control itching, reduce inflammation, prevent new lesions, and treat infections and inflammations. The most important part of this process is keeping the child’s skin moist.
Home Remedies For Eczema:
- It is necessary to have a clean, bright, dry, and cool atmosphere in the house.
- If needed, a humidifier can be installed at home as it will prevent the leather from drying out.
- Immediately after the bath, moisturizing cream can be applied to the skin.
- Creams containing very low cortisone are available over the counter from pharmacies.
- Tight clothing, as well as garments made of synthetic fabrics, should be avoided.
- Olive oil, aloe vera oil, and coconut oil are safe alternatives to apply to affected areas. When applied gently, these oils will soothe the itchy area and reduce symptoms. They contain healthy fatty acids that improve the condition of the skin and reduce the symptoms of eczema.
2. Diaper rash
Diaper rash is a skin irritation that appears around the diaper area, and is usually the result of two main reasons:
- The first is known as (contact dermatitis), and it usually appears if wet and moist diapers come into contact with the skin for long periods, which leads to the appearance of the diaper rash.
- The second reason for the diaper rash is due to bacteria or fungi that infect the diaper area and lead to the appearance of a rash on it.
Whatever the cause, the diaper rash annoys the child and leads to discomfort, which calls for immediate treatment to solve this problem.
What can parents do to prevent diaper rash?
- Change the diaper often.
- Leave your child bare-bottomed for short periods for the skin to dry well. This measure helps prevent or treat mild cases of diaper rash.
- When you change the diaper, gently wash the area with lukewarm water and mild baby soap, rinse, and dry completely.
- Apply unscented petroleum jelly or zinc oxide cream to the diaper-covered skin to protect and moisturize it. You can use baby ointments that work as a barrier, such as Aquaphor, Desitin, or Balmex.
- Some kinds of wet wipes can dry out your baby’s sensitive skin. If you use them, choose unscented, alcohol-free wipes.
- Avoid talcum powder.
Natural recipes for treating diaper rashes:
Oats contain proteins that act as a natural barrier on the skin, in addition to a type of compound called (saponins).
It is responsible for removing dirt and oils from the skin, and oats have anti-inflammatory properties that soothe the irritation and redness associated with the rash, and the method is:
- A tablespoon of oatmeal.
How to prepare:
- Add oats to the baby’s bathwater.
- The child’s body is soaked in water for 10-15 minutes.
- Pat the body dry.
The bath is repeated twice a day.
Baking soda and water rinse
Baking soda or sodium bicarbonate balances the pH of the child’s skin, which helps the skin to combat various microbes, such as bacteria and fungi that cause diaper rash, and the method is:
- Two tablespoons of baking soda.
- Four cups of warm water.
How to prepare:
- Mix the baking with the water until blended well.
- Apply the lotion on the skin.
- Leave the lotion on the child’s skin until it dries.
The lotion is repeated once a day.
3. Seborrheic dermatitis (Cradle Cap)
The cradle cap is a red, scaly rash that appears in infants on the scalp, eyelids, eyebrows, behind the ears, and to the sides of the nose
If dermatitis persists, do not hesitate to check with your pediatrician.
- After auscultation of your little one, he may also advise you on a corticosteroid cream to apply, possibly alternating with an antifungal.
- If despite everything the scabs do not disappear or become infected, your practitioner may also prescribe an anti-inflammatory or antiseptic ointment and/or a local antibiotic to prevent or cure the infection.
- It can be treated with baby oil or shampoo for children, and some creams and moisturizers prescribed by the specialist pediatrician.
4. Insect bites
Children are usually exposed to bites of different types of insects, such as mosquitoes, and others. Especially during the summer time.
Parents have a responsibility to protect the child from these insects that cause painful problems for the skin.
Among the measures that can be taken into consideration are the following:
- Ensure that children wear appropriate clothes: Choose clothes that can protect them from various insects, like thick materials, long sleeves, socks, and hats. Besides, it’s recommended to stay away from the blue clothes color because it attracts mosquitoes, and sometimes bees.
- Use insect repellent: Use a safe amount of insect repellant products throughout the day on children’s clothes and the visible area of their bodies.
- Getting rid of any stagnant water in the area: because it is a source for the accumulation of harmful insects, such as holes, streams, tall grass, and dense forests.
- Use mosquito-repellent candles: These candles are used on the condition that they are placed out of the reach of children.
- Keeping the windows of tents tight when camping: Take care to use mosquito netting for infants, especially when camping in the wilderness.
- Put the trash away: by making sure to dispose of the trash away while camping outside; To avoid attracting wasps and other types of insects.
5. Heat Rash
What are heat rashes?
Heat rash in babies is benign lesions that make the child feel hot. Indeed, they appear when the temperatures are high and the air humid (especially in summer).
Heat rash is a small pink or red papule 1 to 2 mm in diameter. They can be topped with a small blister that ruptures quickly.
These small buttons are often lodged in the areas of the folds of the skin (neck, folds of the ears, behind the knees, folds of the thighs, region of the groin), on the forehead or the scalp, or the areas friction or occlusion of clothing (chest, buttocks).
What is the cause of heat rash?
The appearance of heat rash is linked to a problem with the evacuation of sweat when the child sweats a lot (the regulation of our body temperature is done through the skin through sweating).
They, therefore, occur during high heat in infants in the first weeks because the channels of the sweat glands are not yet open or later in babies or young children on areas of occlusion or friction (bottom of the folds, clothing pressure)
Treatment of heat rash
There is no need to use any rash creams on the affected area unless a pediatrician told you to do so.
The rash resolves as soon as the baby stops feeling warm. The lesions go away on their own in 2 to 3 days.
How to avoid heat rash?
During hot weather, think about:
- Dress the child in light, loose clothes or leave him naked
- Moisturize and refresh the child, for example use a sprayer
- Change the room temperature if it is too hot
- Do not cover the child too much when he sleeps
When to worry?
Consult your doctor or pediatrician if
- your child has a fever or the nodes.
- the buttons do not disappear after three or four days (or even appear to worsen)
Few Things To Keep In Mind
- When dealing with your child’s body always remember to be gentle and handle it with extreme caution. Don’t scrub too much and don’t rub too fast.
- Ensure that you wash your hands thoroughly before touching your child and maintain a high level of personal hygiene.
- Always make sure to dry the skin with a soft towel or cloth
- Make sure that the products you use are for babies and never try adults’ products on them
- If you like to try a new skin product on your child, always test it on a small area to make sure it is safe and doesn’t cause any kind of irritation
- Adjust the skincare routine according to the weather condition for better baby skin care
- Dress your little one comfortable, soft, breathable, and clean clothes all the time to avoid any kind of irritation
- Sun protection is essential as soon as you go out with your little one.
Frequently Asked Questions
Q1. Does the baby have to bathe every day?
You shouldn’t bathe the baby every day. Usually, they don’t get dirty, so you don’t need to bathe them every day. This activity creates a very strong bond between the parents and the baby.
Q2. How to prevent dermatitis caused by diapers?
It is necessary to change the diapers constantly and to clean the area very well to avoid dermatitis. Also, use a lot of water and if you are away from home the sensitive-skin wet wipes are very helpful.
If you are seeing signs of redness, you need to take some action and contact a doctor
Q3. How long should the bath last?
Baby’s skin is thin and sensitive more than that of an adult. Therefore, the bath should not last more than 10 minutes during its first year of life.
Q4. Why does the baby have pimples?
These occur due to the hormones of the mother. It is normal that they appear. We should not rush them and we should just let them go away on their own.
The information in this article is only a guide for educational purposes only and should not be construed as a substitute for advice from a medical professional or healthcare provider.