Published on Sep 10, 2016 and last reviewed on Mar 30, 2022 - 4 min read
This article focuses on the products that should be used for baby skin.
The baby's skin is very sensitive, especially during the season change. Therefore, people taking care of the baby should give proper care to keep them healthy and their skin free from infections. In today's scenario, there are lots of child skincare products, which confuse us. Parents should buy those products marketed by branded companies that have been in the market for a long time.
People becoming parents for the first time always want to give their babies the best. Products which contain artificial fragrances, chemicals, and mild irritants can be harmful to the baby's skin and can cause discomfort, rashes, redness, dryness, and itchiness for babies, even those with normal skin. The skincare products used in adults cannot be used in young ones because their skin is still developing. Therefore, it is essential to buy a special skincare product that is safer for your child's skin (delicate, sensitive, and allergic skin), as they are made in a way that will not harm your child's body.
Avoid using any skincare products on the baby's skin containing dyes and fragrances to prevent allergic reactions. Since the baby's skin is very allergic and sensitive, avoid taking them directly under sun exposure. In this way, you can avoid burns from sun exposure which can cause permanent damage to their skin.
Bathing or Cleaning Your Baby
Bathing is usually required to maintain proper hygiene and clear harmful bacteria over the body. Or, it can increase the water content of your baby's skin and make the skin more trauma-prone. Ideally, the duration of bathing your baby should not be more than five minutes. Use a mild body wash that matches the pH level of the baby's skin.
Ideally, Syndet soap should be used for bathing as Syndets (synthetic detergents) have a neutral or slightly acidic pH and are less irritating to the skin. They do not form a soap scum layer. Various studies show that skin washed with Syndet soap has shown well-preserved lipid and protein regions compared to significant damage to both layers by regular soap.
After taking a bath, your baby should be dried thoroughly, particularly over body folds like the groin and axilla, to prevent humidity in these areas. Otherwise, fungal or bacterial infections may grow.
Regular Change of Diapers:
Diaper rashes are the common skin problems encountered in babies. Undergarments or diapers should be changed frequently, at least while breastfeeding your baby. Undergarments should be carefully washed in lukewarm water, rinsed off, and then dried thoroughly. The area, which is usually occupied by a diaper, is specifically vulnerable as it is a closed environment with frequent wetting suitable for growing bacteria, fungus, or other microorganisms. It is more often moist because of sweating and frequent wetting. Hence, the skin becomes more prone to maceration and becomes more permeable to other irritants and microorganisms.
This is the reason for the need to change diapers frequently and is of utmost importance to prevent your baby from any kind of infection in the nappy area. So change the diaper of the baby at regular intervals.
Care of Scalp:
In most infants or neonates, because of the influence of maternal hormones, their skin has more sebum secretion. It will lead to seborrheic capitis, which usually presents as soft to hard crust over the scalp. It is usually taken care of by shampoo. Before shampooing, the scalp should be soaked in lukewarm coconut or olive oil for 10 to 20 minutes, which softens the crust. Then, the scalp should be shampooed by using plain Ketoconazole or Ketoconazole with Zinc pyrithione two to three times per week. One should never try to remove it or scratch it with nails as it can lead to abrasion and become potential sites for infection.
Basically, bland emollients without fragrance are safe for your baby's skin in preventing peeling and flaking of skin. Mineral oils like olive oil are very safe and reduce the cracking or fissuring of your baby's skin when applied gently to skin.
Powders help absorb excess moisture or sweat during hot and humid environments. They primarily prevent maceration over body folds like the axilla, groin, and neck. Too much application can block the sweat duct opening and cause prickly heat-like rashes over the body folds. The powder should be soft, non-irritant, and fragrance-free.
Body Massage Your Baby:
Massage increases cutaneous blood circulation and gives a sense of touch, fulfilling the basic need to feel safe, comfortable, and loved. Massaging the baby with good natural oils can keep their skin soft and supple and prevent them from getting rough and dry skin due to changes in the weather conditions. Gentle massaging should be done from head to toe. Mineral oil is ideal for body massage because of its easy spreadability and better moisturizing action. Massage should be avoided or withheld if the child or the mother has any contagious skin infections at any point in time. Massaging also helps in the proper physiological growth of the baby, and it also has a psychological benefit.
Aloe vera - It contains vitamins A, B, C, and E. It acts as an excellent moisturizer to the skin and can soothe irritated skin.
Olive oil - It contains vitamin E and helps to keep baby skin smooth and soft.
Almond oil - It contains vitamins A, B2, B6, and E and helps to nourish both skin and hair.
Chickpea flour is used to heal skin problems and cleanse the skin.
Every baby born on earth is quite delicate and has thinner skin. Therefore, the skincare routine is quite different for each baby and deserves special attention. Whenever you buy a skincare product, try to do a patch test first. Apply a small amount of the product to the baby's arm or leg and wait for 24 hours. Use the product only if there is no reaction. If there is any redness or rashes, avoid using those products. It is advisable to use the skincare product recommended by the pediatrician if your baby is vulnerable to any skin infection or eczema.
Some steps can be followed to take care of the delicate skin of a baby, such as:
- Keep the baby clean. Give a gentle bath two to three times a week. Use lukewarm water and mild baby soap and shampoo.
- Change the dirty diapers as soon as possible to prevent diaper rash.
- Trim the nails of the baby whenever they get sharp to prevent scratches.
- Wash the blankets, sheets, and clothing of the baby before and after use by using fragrance-free detergents.
- Protect the baby from the sun.
Before making a skincare routine for the baby, ensure that all the products are clinically tested and safe for babies. The skincare routine can include:
- Cleaning the body using lukewarm water.
- Applying the powder prevents sweating that can form a rash, usually seen in summers.
- Baby oil can be used for massage.
- Moisturizer or lotion can ensure softness and avoid skin conditions like redness, irritation, and infections.
Various home remedies can be used to keep the skin of a baby healthy and glowing. Some things that can be used are as follows:
- Hot oil massage using almond or olive oil.
- Use water for bathing at optimal temperature.
- Do not use soaps as they contain chemicals that can harm the skin.
- Try feeding fruits that can help in cleansing the body.
- Mild moisturizer can be used to keep skin from drying out.
- Keep the baby hydrated.
- Keep them in mild sunlight during the morning time.
- Use soft, natural baby wipes to clean the body.
Cleaning and moisturizing help prevent infections, dryness, and rashes. The moisturizing lotions or creams can be used when the baby is around four weeks of age. However, in the case of premature babies, we should wait for at least six weeks.
Coconut oil is rich in essential fatty acids and proteins and helps nourish and moisturize the skin. Virgin coconut oil is safe for babies and children as it helps treat skin rashes and also moisturizes the skin. In addition to that, it can be applied to hair to keep them moist and soft.
When a baby is born, they have thin see-through skin, which can give the skin a dark red hue, as the blood and vascular structure can be seen through the skin. The yellow color may be due to jaundice which goes away on its own in newborn babies. Blue hands and feet are also commonly seen due to an immature circulatory system.
Breast milk is essential for the normal growth of a baby. In addition, it helps prevent ear infections, reduce respiratory illness, and strengthen the immune system. Other than feeding, breast milk can be used as a lotion for treating eczema in babies. It can be applied to the affected area using a cotton ball to help treat the skin infection.
Both oil and lotion help moisturize the skin, but oil can provide extra protection. Lotions are always good to quickly hydrate the skin of the baby on an everyday basis. And oils also have this function, but they can also be used in conditions like dry skin. Baby skin does not need oil or lotions much unless the baby is bathed frequently or has some skin problems.
Home remedies such as oatmeal baths can be used for soft and glowing skin. In addition, coconut, almond, sunflower, or olive oil can moisturize the skin. Aloe vera can also be used on the skin to treat infections and moisturize during summertime.
Aloe vera has both anti-inflammatory and antimicrobial properties. It can be used on babies older than three months. Applying aloe vera provides nourishment and relief from the irritating rash.
Using aloe vera and coconut oil helps in skin whitening. These both are rich in vitamins and minerals and get easily absorbed into the skin, remove dead cells and revitalize skin cells.
When applied overnight, coconut oil helps moisturize the skin and makes it more soft, supple, and hydrated. It can also be used to treat any inflammation on the skin. In addition, it can be very beneficial for people with dry or flaky skin.
Breast milk is not only a perfect source of nutrition for a baby but also has various other advantages. For example, breast milk can be used as a topical lotion that can be applied on the face of the baby to treat different conditions like acne, dry skin, eczema, and diaper rash. In addition, it has various immunological properties that help treat cracked nipples, pink eyes, and ear infections.
Last reviewed at:
30 Mar 2022 - 4 min read
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