Caring For Your Baby's Skin
You've no doubt marvelled at how incredibly soft your baby's skin is. It is also very delicate, so to care for it, only use mild products, or products specifically designed for babies.
What Products Can I Use?
Baby oil can be used to moisturise babies' skin. Not all babies need their skin moisturising, but if you notice your baby's skin becoming dry after baths, you can either put a small drop of oil into his bath, or massage a little oil over your baby after his wash. Natural cooking oils can also be used but always check which ones are safe as they are not all suitable. Don't use groundnut or peanut oil on your baby in case they have a nut allergy, but olive oil is safe for use on babies' skin and many parents favour it over the man-made alternatives.
Anything To Avoid?
Remember that oils can leave your baby's skin greasy which can be hazardous, especially at bath time. If you find oil makes your baby's skin too slippery, you can use a moisturising cream designed for babies. Check the ingredients for anything your baby is allergic to, and avoid aqueous cream as some babies are sensitive to this.
It's best to avoid using talcum powder on your baby. Babies can inhale it, causing lung problems, and some varieties can trigger yeast infections. It really isn't necessary either; just dry your baby's bottom with a towel.
Some babies get spots or pimples on their faces shortly after birth. These are caused by exposure to their mother's hormones while in the womb and they are nothing to worry about. Don't be tempted to squeeze or pick any of their spots, and there is no need to use any creams on their skin, it will go away by itself.
To take care of the skin on your baby's bottom, which is very sensitive, use a barrier cream which contains zinc oxide. Use alcohol free baby wipes, or if your baby has sensitive skin, stick to cotton wool and warm water to clean his bottom at nappy changes. Change your baby regularly and always dry your baby's bottom well after changing and washing to help prevent nappy rash. If your baby does get a nappy rash, characterised by red, inflamed, swollen skin, wash your baby's bottom with plain water - steer clear of wipes, which can cause stinging. Be gentle as you clean the area, as it can be very sore for babies. If your baby has raised, pink bumps on his bottom, he may have developed a yeast infection as a result of a nappy rash. If you notice these, take him to a doctor.