The arrival of your baby is often a beautiful and rewarding experience. But for many new parents, it can also be a confusing time, especially with so many well-meaning relatives and friends giving conflicting advice on parenting. A common frustration in new parents is caring for your baby’s skin.
You might expect your baby's skin to be flawless, but baby rashes and other skin conditions — such as cradle cap — are common. It is therefore important to distinguish fact from myth, especially when it comes to taking care of your baby’s delicate and sensitive skin. Here’s a list of the most common baby skin care myths you should know:
Myth 1: Being super clean is the only way to prevent irritation
Tip: Washing too frequently is often a culprit of sensitive skin. Excessive cleansing will strip your baby’s skin of its protective oils and natural flora.
Myth 2: Moisturising all the time will improve my baby’s skin.
Tip: Not quite. Moisturising straight after each cleansing or bathing your child is best. You want to lock in the moisture absorbed by the skin during bathing, so just a light pat down is needed and then apply a good moisturising cream or lotion. This is especially important when your baby has a rash, as moisturisers will protect him/her from further irritation.
Myth 3: My baby gets too messy, so I need to scrub him or her down.
Tip 3: There is no need to rub/scrub your baby’s skin, as not only may it irritate skin, it may also disrupt the growth of your baby’s own protective skin barrier and cause problems later down the track.
Myth 4: I don’t need to use a barrier cream or powder on my baby’s nappy area. He/she won’t need it since I change him/her regularly.
Tip: Protection is the best cure. I highly advise you to use a product designed to keep irritants such as urine or faecal matter separate from skin. Nappy rash can be extremely painful and may lead to secondary infections that require specialised antifungal creams. DU’ IT has a nappy change cream that acts as a physical barrier for the skin, containing higher concentrations of protective ingredients than other brands, and they also have a talc free Liquid Powder, which means less mess and less excessive drying when changing your baby.
ABOUT THE EXPERT
Narisha Ashelford is a mother and a Certified Sleep Consultant.