Ready or not, the cold weather is rolling in all over the country (as much as I would love the summer days to last) and the cold, wet, rainy months can be a difficult time to keep your baby’s skin healthy. During winter, your baby needs extra care and attention to prevent seasonal illness as the cold season is known to make their skin dry that can lead to diaper rash, rough cheeks, flaky skin and scalp. Here are the most common skin problems that babies face during winter:
- Nappy rash:Wearing a diaper of the wrong size and friction generally causes diaper rashes.
- Rough, red cheeks:Chapped skin is basically dry skin that becomes inflamed due to irritation caused by friction from clothing and a runny nose.
- Eczema:Babies with eczema have insufficient skin surface for holding moisture. Like regular dry skin, dermatitis tends to erupt during winter.
PROTECTING AGAINST THE ELEMENTS
This goes hand in hand with dressing your baby and toddler in warm clothing, but be sure to keep your baby protected from the cold and wind as much as possible. You might consider using a cover for your stroller so you can still get in those daily walks but your baby won’t be exposed to the wind and cold. And make sure baby’s head and hands are covered whenever you’ll be out for prolonged periods of time.
USE A HUMIDIFIER.
Use a humidifier in your baby’s room when he/she sleeps at night. Since the heater in the home also sucks the moisture out of your baby’s skin, you’ve got to replenish it. Using a humidifier will help to put some of that moisture back into the house, and into your baby’s skin.
THINK WARM, NOT HOT.
Many babies love splashing in the tub. But long, hot baths can dry your baby’s skin. Keep baths warm; limit them to five minutes and stick to an irritant/tear-free hair and body cleanser. We recommend a bath each night to help your baby wind down and get ready for sleep. Make sure you continue with your night-time bath routine throughout the winter, but be sure to use lukewarm – not hot – water. If your baby’s skin becomes irritated, try soap alternatives or forego liquid soaps altogether and try a hypoallergenic, unscented moisturising bar from Epizone Skin or the Epizone E Ointment as a soap substitute.
Another skin-hydrating trick? The “soak and seal” method. As soon as baby is out of the tub, pat skin dry (don’t rub) and use a thick cream or ointment. Applying the cream immediately after drying helps seal in moisture.
MOISTURISE! MOISTURISE! MOISTURISE!
Baby’s skin is so delicate that it needs extra TLC. After a bath, be sure to apply a fragrance-free moisturising cream or ointment Choose a moisturiser specifically formulated for delicate baby skin like Baby & Kids Ezpione A, or if you prefer one that is made from natural and organic oils, like Shea butter, cocoa butter, evening primrose and avocado oils. These oils are incredibly nourishing and beneficial for your baby’s developing skin barrier. The best time to apply moisturiser is after you bathe your baby, while their skin is still slightly damp and able to ‘lock-in’ extra moisture
NIP ECZEMA IN THE BUD
While rosy red cheeks can be oh so adorable, the redness could be a sign of eczema, especially if it turns into red, scaly, itchy patches. In babies, eczema not only affects their cheeks but the outer parts of their arms, legs and trunk as well. Some children with eczema only have symptoms in the winter months when the dryness and cold air can trigger a flare-up. Babies are prone to eczema if they have any family history of asthma, hay fever or eczema. If your baby shows any of the above signs of eczema, be sure to moisturise twice a day with an ointment in addition to moisturising after baths like the Epizone E Ointment by Baby & Kids. A big part of eczema care is prevention on the front end so it never gets bad and uncomfortable for your baby.
BE CONSCIOUS OF HEAT
As the temperature become cooler, it is often tempting to turn up the heater inside. Even though an extra warm home can make your child feel cosier in the short term, it may lead to skin dryness. Try keeping the heating temperature around 21 degrees for the best result.
Hot water can also have a drying effect on your baby’s skin, particularly when wind and weather have already started to take their toll. Try keeping the bath water around 36 degrees (a bath thermometer is great to use if you have one) to minimise dryness and use a soap and sulphate free bath wash instead of plain soap (preferably one with added moisturisers that is pH balanced) to help support the skin’s natural acid mantle.
Hydration is equally important: Give your baby (6 months and older) lukewarm water to drink so he/she remains hydrated from inside.
KNOW WHEN IT’S time TO CALL THE DOC
If your baby has pronounced redness or an itchy rash it can be hard to know when to call in reinforcement. As a general rule of thumb, if your baby seems especially bothered by the condition due to itching, pain, irritability or a fever, and what you’re doing to ease symptoms do not improve in a space of 3 of days, call your doctor. Your pediatrician or dermatologist may have a prescription that will do the trick.