Congratulations on your newborn. This is a very exciting time, but it can also be nerve-wracking. For a lot of new parents, you may be feeling overwhelmed by the number of things you have to do and keep track of for the safety and health of your baby. At times it can be hard to keep track. Some things you learn through trial and error. One of those things that is a mystery is how to take care of your baby’s skin.
You may have noticed that your infant’s skin is dry, patchy and peeling. Thankfully, taking care of your baby’s skin no longer has to be a mystery. We provide you with the essential keys to taking care of your newborn’s skin, but first, you must get a better understanding of why your baby’s skin may be peeling in the first place.
What Causes Newborn Skin Peeling
There are plenty of newborn peeling skin causes. When your baby was born, their skin was covered with amniotic fluid, blood and vernix which is a thick coating that protects your newborn’s skin from amniotic fluid. Those fluids are wiped off and your baby will start to shed its outer layer of skin within one to three weeks of being born.
Other causes of your baby’s peeling skin could be conditions like Eczema or Ichthyosis. Eczema causes dry, red, itchy patches on your baby’s skin. For you to see this condition develop in your baby shortly after birth is unlikely as it typically develops later in infancy. Ichthyosis causes scaly, itchy skin, and skin shedding in your newborn.
Taking Care Of Your Baby’s Skin
Dry, peeling skin on a newborn is normal. Unless there is an underlying condition that is causing the peeling, it is super easy to soothe. Following these steps will make the peeling either stop, get under control, or prevent it altogether.
Bath Dos And Don’ts
Make sure that you are bathing your baby two to three times a week in warm water. Do not bathe your baby in hot water as really hot water could further dry the skin. Once you have found the perfect temperature, fill the tub or washbin up with no more than two to three inches of water. Gently wash your baby’s skin and scalp with a soft washcloth, making sure to dip it into the soapy water. If you are trying to clean your baby’s face, use a moist cotton ball and softly dab away the dirt.
After you have taken your baby out of the tub or washbin, dry your baby off gently and immediately follow with moisturizing with baby lotion. This prevents dry skin by locking in the moisture it got while bathing.
Diaper Dos And Don’ts
You want to change your baby’s diaper frequently. Do not wait until their diaper is noticeably soiled. When you are changing your baby’s diaper, you should also be gentle when wiping. Be thorough with each wipe as well. Put diaper cream or a splash of warm water from a squirt bottle on your infant’s bottom and pat dry. The key is to let it air dry because you do not want your baby to have a diaper rash. Double-check that your diapers are fragrance-free and do not fit too tightly as that can cause chafing.
Product Dos and Don’ts
Products that you use on your baby should be fragrance-free and tear-free. No matter if they are gels, lotions or shampoos. Keep lotion on hand at all times as you do not want your baby’s skin to be dry and flaky. Take it a step further and use ointments. Baby powder is not necessary, but if you use it make sure to sprinkle a small amount. As far as products to avoid, it is recommended that you stay away from perfumed, antibacterial and deodorant soaps until your baby is a toddler. Stick to baby soaps and shampoos until your child is ready for the next step.
Keep A Close Eye On The Weather
If your baby is younger than six months, it is recommended that they stay out of the direct sun. Once they have reached the six-month mark, make sure to apply sunscreen with an SPF of 30 all over your baby’s skin that is exposed. It should be applied 30 minutes before a day in the sun. It is also recommended that you dress your baby in loose-fitting clothes and a hat to shield them from the sun and to prevent heat rashes.