Adults have access to various skin care products that hydrate and heal. For babies, it is important to choose products carefully since certain ingredients may worsen skin conditions.
Newborns are often born with a whitish coating on their skin which protects babies while in the womb. This is referred to as vernix caseosa. After birth, the vernix is absorbed exposing newborns to the elements for the first time. This exposure can cause dryness on the top layer of the skin.
Although no action is required at this point, there are some precautions pediatricians recommend.
What Exactly Causes Baby Dry Skin?
Many factors contribute to dry skin including consistent exposure to heat and cold, lack of moisture in the air, and even washing your baby too often. Skin problems including eczema, psoriasis, or keratosis pilaris can also cause dry, flaky skin.
Dry skin is prone to cracking and peeling which can be quite uncomfortable for your baby. It is important to learn how to treat dry skin as soon as possible to relieve any discomfort.
Common Baby Dry Skin Symptoms
How will you know if your baby has dry skin? There are certain signs that you need to watch out for including the following:
- Scaly, rough texture of the skin
- Red, dry patches on different parts of the body
- White scales that tend to peel at the edges
- Deep cracks on the skin that may lead to bleeding
- Rash on the face and various parts of the body
When these symptoms start to appear, talk to your pediatrician.
Although the dry skin may look alarming to parents, the condition is not painful or itchy.
Chances Are It Is Not Cradle Cap
Many new parents think that cradle cap is caused by dry skin. That is incorrect. Cradle cap (infantile seborrheic dermatitis) is a condition that affects the stratum corneum layer of the skin. It is not confined to the scalp area. Scaly patches of yellow, greasy areas or a red rash may appear on the scalp and extend to the forehead, eyes, ears, eyebrows and the back of the baby’s head.
Simple Soothing Tips For Baby Dry Skin
There are several precautions and treatments for dry skin. If you want to keep your baby happy and free of irritating dry patches, then these 5 steps must be followed.
Baby Dry Skin Tip #5 – Avoid Harsh Soap
Your baby has very delicate skin. Soaps made for adults may be too harsh for a child.
Even when using soaps formulated for babies, remain vigilant when it comes to the ingredients. Products may include harsh ingredients or artificial scents that can trigger dryness.
Baby Dry Skin Tip #4 – Protect
No matter the weather outside your home, it is your responsibility to keep your baby protected.
If you are going out during the summer, cover children with hats, and apply organic sunscreen lotion from time to time especially at the beach. Sea salt, dry wind, and the sun can wreak havoc on a child’s skin.
If the weather is cold, make sure that your baby is buttoned up to protect the skin from the biting wind.
Parents must pay special attention to diaper rash. Diapers should be changed promptly as wetness causes skin irritation. Some parents prefer cloth diapers; others prefer disposable diapers that include a wetness indicator. The goal is to keep the baby dry.
Proper washing and drying of the entire diaper area are paramount.
Use organic skin care products that are safe to maintain a proper skin barrier. These are essential to prevent dryness and inflammation.
Change your newborn before bedtime to encourage uninterrupted sleep through the night and the right start to a great morning.
There is nothing better than a peaceful sleep for both children and parents.
Baby Dry Skin Tip #3 – Short and Sweet
It is understandable wanting your baby to be squeaky clean. However, spending too much time in the water dries out your baby’s skin.
Experts recommend limiting bath time to ten minutes to maintain the natural oils on the skin.
There are times when your baby will play in the water. Do not add water to extend play time when the baby is in the tub. Add the warm water when the child is safely outside of the tub to maintain temperature control.
Apply an organic moisturizer that is safe for your baby’s delicate skin post bath. These often include an emollient that prevents your infant from developing flaky skin.
Baby Dry Skin Tip #2 – Humidify
Dry air deprives your baby’s skin of moisture. When the air inside your house lacks humidity, it affects your baby’s skin.
To avoid this, install a humidifier that sprays cool mist. This adds moisture to the air and prevents dry skin.
Baby Dry Skin Tip #1 – Hydrate
During the summer, the lack of water in the environment can cause dry skin. Give your little one enough fluids to stay hydrated.
Adequate breast milk or formula is vital to keep skin moist, smooth, and soft.
Start with these tips and tricks, and expand your research if needed. There are other tips that you can follow when it comes to caring for your baby’s skin.
With a little extra effort, you will find that your baby’s skin will remain smooth, soft, and healthy.