Baby Care Tips

Babies Skin

Baby skin is extremely delicate and sensitive so you need to be very careful of any cleansers that you might use on the skin.

Only use specific products that have been formulated for use on babies as they have ingredients in them that are a lot milder and designed to reduce the incidence of rash and other skin irritations.

If you find that your child is getting skin irritations, eczema or other skin problems then you need to look at all aspects of the products that you are using on your child.

You will also need to look at the products that you are using to clean your child's nappies and clothing and even the materials used for the clothing that your baby is wearing as some fabrics can irritate the skin.

It is important to maintain high levels of cleanliness particularly where nappies need to be changed on a regular basis so your child remains clean and dry as much as possible.

If you have a child with particularly sensitive skin you might need to consider using disposable nappies rather than washing your own reusable nappies as this will ensure that there are no cleaning products that could cause skin irritations.

It is quite common for children to get rashes and skin irritations at a very young age and there are some excellent products on the market to help comfort a child during these times.

You should air your baby's bedding on a regular basis and check for any dampness as this can lead to mould and other bacterial problems that can cause skin irritations and also breathing problems.

Even the condition of the baby's room can have a dramatic effect on the child's skin and also their breathing so make sure the room is clean and free of dust and dampness and there are no draughts.

Consider changing any products that you are using if you find that you're not resolving any skin issues even those that you have used successfully on another child as sometimes one product could cause problems whereas another similar product is completely satisfactory for your child.

Cleanliness

To maintain your child's good health it is essential that all aspects of the babies care are performed with the utmost in cleanliness.

Babies should be washed on a daily basis with warm water to thoroughly clean the body while always remembering that they are extremely delicate at that stage of their life and have very sensitive skin.

Make sure that the water is not overly warm or cold because at this stage of the baby's life they are susceptible to temperature changes and cannot handle them as well as older children.

Any cleaning materials that you use on your child's skin need to be mild to ensure that there are no allergic reactions or other skin problems caused by the cleaning.

Your baby should be checked on a regular basis to see that the nappies are clean and dry as wet nappies are one of the fastest ways for your child's to get skin rashes and irritations.

You will also find that if your baby is dry warm and clean they will be a lot more contented and will sleep a lot better and that in turn will ensure that you have a better night's sleep and everyone remains happier and healthier.

A soft sponge or a flannel can be used to wipe down your baby's body and non-allergic oils and talcum powders can be used on areas where there are rashes or dry skin.

Even though you might be diligent in cleaning your child's clothing and bedding it is not uncommon for some people to see rashes appear from the child's skin and unbeknown to them it has come about from the fact that even though they have washed the clothing and bedding there is still cleaning residues left on the material and it is this residue that is causing the problems.

It doesn't take very much to inflame or irritate a baby's skin and the first sign of any reaction should be noted and steps taken to reduce any discomfort or pain.

Organic Products

Organic baby products seem to be what every parent wants right now. It is all part of wanting the best for your baby. Organic products are restricted in their use of chemicals and should contain fewer additives or chemical treatments than standard products. Some will also be fair trade so you can be sure the manufacturer is not profiting from exploitative work policies. Buying organic gives you as a parent more security in knowing that nothing toxic or harmful should be coming in contact with your beautiful baby. Fortunately there are many organic baby care products available to consumers today.

Organic Baby Bath Products

Baby bath wash and lotion is a small but important purchase that you will be making. If you buy organic bath products you should find that all of the ingredients are natural. Soap ingredients should be plant-based rather than made from animal fats, herbal oils will be used, and any coloring and fragrance should be natural. Organic products will usually be easier on your baby's skin, so that sensitivities and rashes are less likely to develop. Also you should not need to worry about the long term effects if your baby drinks some of the bath water.

Organic Diaper Cream

Organic diaper ointment or cream is a wonderful product and comes highly recommended. An organically formulated diaper cream should be 100% natural and perfect for your baby's sensitive bottom. Again herbal essential oils, beeswax and natural plant-derived butters are used. These are less likely to cause irritation than chemical-based products, and they are usually easier to wipe away.

Organic Baby Food

Organic baby food has become popular in the last couple of decades along with all other organic food. The rules for organic food products are very stringent and if the label says 'organic' you can be sure that the ingredients were all grown in an environment free of pesticides. In addition, purified water will be used and the mashed and strained fruits and vegetables that you buy for your baby will have undergone less processing if they are organic.

You can also buy organic infant formula which gives your baby a great start in life. This is made from the same ingredients as non-organic formula except that it will be free of pesticide residues and genetically modified ingredients. It may be easier for babies to digest and the lack of chemical residues means that it is less likely to spark an allergic reaction.

Organic Baby Clothes

Organic baby clothing is usually made from organically grown cotton. The same rules apply as for organic food. The cotton will not have been sprayed with pesticides and is less likely to irritate your baby's skin. The fabric is often softer too. However, the lack of treatments means that the cotton is more likely to shrink, so you may want to buy a size bigger than you need right now.

Organic Baby Toys

The way babies put their toys in their mouths all the time, you will see why many parents want to buy organic baby toys. You almost have to consider them as food! Organic toys will be made from natural materials, without the chemicals that are found in plastics. Examples of organic toys are rag dolls and other soft toys made of cotton, wooden trucks and other wooden toys, and board books made of organic cardboard. Organic toys are very attractive with an old fashioned style and although they can be more expensive, they will be high quality and often last longer than cheap toys.

All of these products are things that you and your baby will use every day for the first important formative years. You can be reassured that you are providing your baby with the best chance of staying healthy and growing strong with organic baby products.

Skin Care - Go Natural

Baby skin is generally very sensitive and particular care needs to be taken when using any forms of skincare products lotions or oils on your baby.

Natural baby care products are often the best ones to use as they are usually a lot milder than other products and are less likely to cause allergic reactions.

Another thing to consider with babies is the fact that they have always got their hands on their mouth and anything that comes in contact with their hands is likely to get ingested so for this reason anything that you put on your baby's skin needs to be safe for them as more often than not it will get transferred to their mouth.

Any moisturizers or powders that you put on the skin need to be safe not only due to the fact that babies do put their hands in their mouth but also because substances can be transmitted into the bloodstream transdermally through the skin.

You also need to consider the fact that the skin is also the way that the human body eliminates toxins from the system and if you are using any types of lotions or oils on your baby skin that could hinder the skins ability to eliminate toxins then this will be detrimental to your child's health.

Quite often skin products that we might use on our skin such as oils and moisturizers can block the pores of the skin and stop this process of toxin elimination and allowing the skin to remain healthy and clear.  You shouldn't be using the same products on your baby as you would use on your own skin even though quite often baby skin can become quite dry.  It is important that you use dedicated baby skincare products that are designed specifically for the type of skin that a young child will have taking into account sensitivities and various other factors.

All natural products are generally the safest to use but even then you need to be sure that the products that you are using are suitable for a young child as even natural ingredients can cause skin irritations and other skin problems.

Diaper - Nappy Rash

Diaper rash is something that you will have to deal with on a regular basis as it is just a part of life for a baby in the first year or so.

The most likely cause of diaper rash is from wetness where even the most absorbent nappies won't take all the moisture away from the skin.

As a baby's skin is very sensitive it doesn't take much to develop diaper rash.

The longer a baby is left in a damp diaper the more chance it will have of developing diaper rash.

This is only made worse when there is feces in the diaper as the bacteria from the stool will mix with the urine creating ammonia which is particularly harsh on a baby's skin.

Moisture in the diaper also makes chafing worse and as chafing is one of the reasons for diaper rash the combination of the two can make for a very unhappy child.

Once again cleanliness will help reduce the problem however even the detergents that you use to clean nappies can cause a reaction with your baby's skin and this can be another cause of diaper rash.

Chafing can be reduced by powders or the use or petroleum jelly but even some of the powders can cause sensitivities with some babies.

You can see how there are many different factors that need to be considered when trying to solve your baby's rashes.

A change of food for your child and in particular when moving to solids can also cause a problem as the composition of the stool will change and there is likely to be more stool movements which will necessitate diaper changes more often.

Because diapers are warm and moist the incidence of bacteria and yeast are increased and this can cause infections in the folds of the baby's skin.

Diaper rash can be anything from very mild where it will only appear as puffy or warm skin to more severe where the skin is red and irritated and causes your baby discomfort even when lightly touched.

Diapers

Baby diapers are most certainly big business in the United States and all other western countries. Disposable diapers are what most people use and there is a never-ending market for them. Most parents find them much more convenient than cloth diapers. You can clean up easily without having to launder the diaper. 

Disposable diapers were first seen in stores in the 1940s, but they took a while to catch on. They were too expensive for most people and those who could afford them often had servants to do the baby care and laundering so they did not see the benefit. Also, the early disposable diapers were just in one size that did not always fit the baby well, so they leaked worse than cloth diapers.

In the 1950s, when disposable diapers started to be manufactured in different sizes, they became more popular with the rich. It was not until the 1970s that the price of disposable diapers (along with many other plastic-based products) dropped to the point where they became affordable for most people. People very quickly found how convenient they were and it was soon considered very old-fashioned and even unhygienic to use cloth diapers.

Disposable diapers have continued to improve every decade, becoming lighter weight, more absorbent and better fitting. Different styled diapers for boys and girls appeared, they were given cute designs, and diapers became more environmentally friendly due to customer demand. There are now several large manufacturers, all claiming to make the best disposable diaper for your baby.

In the late 1990s and 2000s there has been a swing back towards cloth diapers. This has come about for many reasons. One is the increasing interest in the environment. People are concerned at the way our garbage is increasing. They do not always think of the environmental cost of laundering cloth diapers, and the electricity, water and detergent that it uses.

Cloth diapers have changed a lot in the last 50 years. The cotton used these days is treated so that it stays much softer and is easier to wash than it ever used to be. They come in different colors now with cute patterns. Diaper pins have gotten more cute too, and many cloth nappies do not even need them, because they fasten with buttons or velcro.

Even with cloth diapers you do have a disposable section which is the liner. This means you do not have to deal with big mess on the diaper itself. Another advantage of cloth diapers is that children who wear them will usually toilet train earlier because they can feel the unpleasantness of being wet in a cloth diaper. On the other hand, a small baby in a cloth diaper is more likely to wake when it is wet for this same reason.

Cloth diapers are also less irritating to the skin for most babies, and as many babies these days develop skin problems like eczema, this can be important for parents in their choice of baby diapers.

Cradle Cap

Cradle cap is a very common condition that occurs for many healthy babies.
It generally develops in the first few weeks of your baby's life and can last in some cases for up to a year.

While it isn't very nice to look at and you might feel unhappy that your child has developed it, cradle cap is not harmful to your child in any way and it is not something that you need to be overly concerned with.

Most of the time it will clear up on its own and often attempts that parents make to 'fix' the problem can cause it to take longer to clear up.

It is similar to the dry skin that adults get when their oil glands are overactive.
This can produce dandruff like conditions that will usually occur on the scalp but can also appear on the ears and eyebrows.

Where the condition is more pronounced the scalp can appear to have a yellowish crust in flaky patches.

The first thing many parents tend to do when they see this flaky skin it to smother it with oils or petroleum jelly to help moisturize the skin but this can actually make the condition worse by blocking up the pores of the skin.
As the pores are already blocked this will tend to prolong the time it takes for the cradle cap to clear up.

With adult skin an exfoliant will help to remove the dry skin but a baby's skin is far too sensitive to use this method and should not be used even if some people recommend this method to you.

Time will solve the problem and the best solution is to gently shampoo the scalp with a suitable baby care shampoo.

There are some new baby care products that are starting to address this problem and while they won't clear up the cradle cap they will reduce the time it takes for it to disappear in most cases.
These products help to moisturize and soften the dry skin allowing the crusty areas to fall away.

Product Additives

It might surprise you to know that many of the baby skin care products on the market contain ingredients that can cause skin irritations and other allergies.

Many manufacturers of baby care products are unfortunately focused first and foremost on their profits and they know that packaging and marketing are what sells their products more than anything else.

For this reason they will add fragrances and colorants to enhance the look and smell of the product in the hope to boost sales. Unfortunately it is these very same colors and fragrances that can play havoc with your child's comfort and health.

Having eczema and skin irritations is a big factor in why many babies are unsettled and cry a lot. If you believe that the products you are using are causing this then stop using them and see if there are any improvements in your baby's skin condition.

Look at the ingredients on the packs and see if they have included any chemicals or colors that could be causing the problems. This is one very good reason to recommend all natural products for baby skin care as there is less chance of irritation or problems caused where fragrances can affect breathing and asthma type symptoms.

Once again even if you do decide to use natural products be sure to check the ingredients before buying as many of the companies that market these 'so called natural products' use additional ingredients to make their products more 'marketable'

You can always make your own products as that will be one surefire way to know exactly what is going into them however you're probably already coping with a shortage of time and energy so for most people that won't be a viable option.

Take your time in selecting baby products and always be on the lookout for any signs that they could be affecting your child. If in doubt make changes and discuss these matters with other parents to see if they have noticed similar problems.

Also; be wary that residue that is left on garments and bedding from cleaning products can also cause skin irritations. Make sure after washing that you remove all traces of washing powder and detergents from the garments.

Eczema

Baby eczema is becoming more and more common in western societies. If your baby has it, you are not the only parent to be wondering what to do. It can be very upsetting to see your baby so uncomfortable. If you are worried about your baby's eczema, you should mention it to your doctor or to the staff at any baby care clinic that you attend.

What Is Eczema?

Eczema is an irritating skin rash that your baby will want to scratch. It can start at any age, but most commonly first appears between the ages of 2 months and 24 months. It usually appears on the head (cheeks, forehead and scalp), although babies may have it on other parts of the body too.

Eczema is believed to be caused by the baby not being able to tolerate some elements in food or the environment. Infant eczema is on the increase and most people believe this is as result of more pollution and chemicals entering our bodies in our modern industrial societies. There also seems to be a hereditary element in the tendency to develop eczema.

It eases as children get older, and a large number outgrow it completely, but that is not much comfort to the parent who has a sore, red, crying baby right now!

What Can I Do For My Baby's Eczema?

There are many things that you can do to ease your baby's eczema. Firstly, make sure your baby's skin does not become too dry. You can find a very mild cream suitable for baby eczema to apply all over, immediately after bathing your baby. In the bath, do not have the water too warm and use a special mild soap. Ordinary soaps and lotions could irritate the skin.

Dress your baby in 100% cotton. Man-made fabrics can cause the skin to sweat, leading to more irritation. Avoid wool and anything that feels scratchy on the skin. Also, make sure that you always wash all the family's clothes, bed sheets, towels, etc in a very mild detergent suitable for people with sensitive skin. Any time you hold your baby, he or she comes in contact with your clothes and could be affected by the detergent you are using.

Keep the house as clean as possible. Dust mites are very common in most households and hard to avoid if you have many rugs and carpets, but regular vacuum cleaning can help. Babies may also react to pollen, so you could try keeping flowers out of the house for a while. Animals are another common cause of irritation. If you have a pet, try to keep the house as free as possible from their hairs.

Diet is often a factor and many parents switch their babies from cow's milk products to soy because of eczema. Other foods may be irritating your baby's system too. Ask your doctor if your baby can be tested for food intolerances. If you are breastfeeding, you will have to eliminate any foods your baby cannot tolerate from your own diet. But make sure that you and your baby are still getting all the nutrients that you need.

The final point is to stop the baby scratching, as that will only make him or her more uncomfortable. Keep your baby's fingernails short and smooth, and have your baby wear cotton mittens and socks at all times to lessen the damage that scratching will do.

Finally, if it persists, do speak to your doctor about your baby eczema problem.

Stomach Upsets

It is not uncommon for babies to have stomach upsets.

While they are still developing so too is their digestive system but there is another cause that is more common for the reason why many young children have stomach upsets and that is simply because of the fact that they put their hands or anything that they find in their mouth a regular basis.

Obviously if their hands or the objects that they are putting in their mouth are dirty then there is an increased chance that they will get a stomach upset.

By keeping your child clean at all times and not allowing him or her to handle objects that are dirty will go a long way to reducing the incidence of stomach upsets.

Another cause a stomach upset can be where the quality of the milk that the child is getting from the mother when being breast-fed does not contain the necessary nutrition for the child to remain healthy and if that's the case then your doctor's advice will be required.

Not cleaning bottles sufficiently if your child is fed baby formula can also result in stomach upsets that can lead to diarrhoea or constipation.

A change of baby formula can also cause an upset and even when weaning your child onto solid foods it is not uncommon for stomach upsets to be more prevalent.

There is a delicate balance that needs to be maintained in your child's digestive system and there are many different factors that can affect that balance.

These are just a few areas that you need to take a look at if you find that your child is getting stomach upsets on a regular basis.
If you can't find a suitable solution relatively fast then see your doctor as soon as possible because it doesn't take much for such a small child to suffer from malnutrition.

Constipation

Many parents are unaware that constipation in babies and toddlers is a relatively common problem and is a cause for concern for a large percentage of parents.

Constipation can lead to very unsettled and unhappy children and makes for sleeping difficulties too.

The same causes of constipation in adults are the reasons while babies and young children get constipated.
It is due to a lack of fluids and/or fiber in the diet.

One of the problems with babies however is the fact that the problem tends to get worse if steps aren't taken to resolve it.

Once a baby gets constipated they will realize that pain is associated with their attempts to pass a stool and this will make them tend to avoid going.
Once this starts to happen they get into a circle of not wanting to go to the toilet and getting constipated more often.

One thing that you must avoid doing with babies or young children is to use laxatives.
Laxatives can cause other problems for your child and you should never use any forms of medication without consulting your doctor.

The problem stems from the child's diet and the first step is to increase the fiber in their diet.
This can be as simple as adding more fruit and vegetables to the diet and making sure that the fluid intake is increased.
Water is the best form of fluid and the additional moisture that is present in the child's stool will make it easier to pass.

You should also try to get your child into a routine whereby they expect to make a bowel movement at particular times during the day and the best time is often soon after a meal.
This will introduce some regularity into their life and reduce the chance of them getting constipated from 'holding on'

Teething

Most babies start getting their first teeth from about 4 months of age.
This will vary from one child to another and it is not uncommon for many babies to take up to a year before their first teeth begin to appear.

Most babies will experience some form of discomfort during this time and they can also get various different symptoms such as diarrhea, fever and so on.

It is during this period that sleep is often disturbed and this can be a very stressful time for the parents.

Some babies will also start refusing their food as they associate it with the pain that they are experiencing from their new teeth coming through.
Swelling of their gums and the associated sensitivity also makes eating more unpleasant.

Along with this lack of sleep and an unwillingness to eat many babies become irritable during teething and will cry a lot more than normal.

The teething can bring associated problems as there is more saliva in the mouth and this gets swallowed.
The increase in saliva makes the baby's stools a lot looser and this in turn can cause diarrhea.

The diarrhea then creates the problems of an increase in the incidence of diaper rash which only adds to the problems that you and your baby have to cope with during this time.

Some parents and babies get through this period with little difficulty at all but most will regard this as one of the most unpleasant times of bringing up a child.

If your baby has a high temperature this can be caused by the teething but you should always take your baby to the doctor if this happens as it could be some other medical problem and not related to the teething at all.

Also, monitor your baby's weight as a reluctance to eat might cause it to start losing weight.

Administering Medications

Whenever your child needs medication you need to be careful that you only give the precise dose as recommended by your doctor.

While adults and older children might be able to get away with doses that are 'close enough' this is very risky for a baby.

Being so much smaller you need to be aware that even a small variance in the dose can have a dramatic effect on the results.

Make sure that you always use the measuring device that comes with any medication and if one isn't supplied make sure that you buy an accurate measure that you can rely on.

Don't give doses based on a teaspoon as the size of teaspoons can vary and along with that there is the possibility that you will be giving your child more medication than is necessary or worse still you could be giving doses that could be more detrimental to their health rather than solving a problem.

You should also never make your own judgment on the amount of medication that your child needs without first consulting your medical practitioner as this can endanger your child's health without you realizing it.

Natural health remedies are often very potent and the fact that they are natural doesn't make them 100% safe for your child so once again always seek professional advice even when using natural products.

Some natural products can even be toxic to a small baby and can do a lot of harm. Unfortunately there are far too many people who don't have the necessary knowledge to give you the best advice when selling these 'natural' products and more often than not they are doing harm without knowing it.

In the early stages of your baby's development it is best to rely on trusted medical practitioners as a baby can get to a critical stage of sickness very rapidly and it isn't worth the risk using medication that could have a negative affect on health.

Even small changes in your baby's weight will have a big affect on the amount of medication your medical profession will prescribe.

 

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Also see other informative articles and tips at Safety Tips, Preparing for Baby, Shopping Tips, New Born Baby Tips, Feeding Baby's & Toddlers, Sleep Tips, Pregnancy & More, Parenting, Trust Your Sixth Sence,

Sids Prevention.

 

 

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