Babies have soft and delicate skin. Babies’ sensitive skins are more susceptible to getting dried. Many babies may have dry and peeling skin for a few days after the birth. This article takes you through the ways that you can do to retain the normal skin in your baby.
Babies may encounter dry skin on their faces and throughout their body that may go on it’s own in some babies. Some other babies need treatment, and continued observation.
This article discusses the dry skin in children. It presents the remedies for dry skin in babies.
What Is Dry Skin In Babies?
It is an uncomfortable condition accompanied by scaling, itching, and cracking of the skin. Even the oil skin is likely to develop dry skin more frequently. It can affect any part of the body. Dry skin normally affects hands, legs, and hands.
Contact dermatitis is the medical term used for the extreme dry skin. There are several types of Contract Dermatitis.
1. Contact Dermatitis:
This skin condition develops when you touch something that your skin is sensitive to. It causes localized inflammation.
Contact Dermatitis occurs due to the exposure of the skin to irritating chemical agents like bleach.
2. Seborrheic Dermatitis:
Seborrheic dermatitis occurs with the skins that produce more amounts of oils. It produces a red and scaly rash on the scalp. Infants are most commonly affected by this rash.
3. Atopic Dermatitis:
This is also known as Eczema. This condition produces dry scaly patches on your skin. This type of skin condition is more common among the young children.
Other conditions like Psoriasis or Type 2 diabetes may cause this condition.
Causes of Dry Skin in Babies:
Here are a few triggers that cause dry skin in babies.
1. Newborn Skin Peeling:
Newborn babies might encounter peeling of the skin for the few days after the birth. In the womb baby’s skin is protected from the amniotic fluid by the vernix. Vernix is a waxy coating.
Covering the baby’s skin with vernix after the birth will help the baby to adapt to the environment outside the womb. Preterm babies have the least skin peeling when compared to the babies who are born at the term. On the other hand, overdue babies have less vernix but more skin peeling than the babies who are born at the term.
2. Overexposure to water:
Long baths especially with the hot water will wash away the natural oils of the skin. The skin which has a lack of oils is more prone to peeling and often getting dried. The harsh soaps may also have a similar effect on your child’s skin.
3. Nutritional deficiency:
Deficiency of the vitamin A leads to the dry skin in your child. Selenium deficiency also causes the dryness of the skin.
4. Tight Clothing:
Tight clothes makes your baby more vulnerable to the several skin conditions. They act as catalysts to induce dry skin in your child. The friction between the clothes and body worsens the situation of skin dry in your child.
When your baby is exposed to the cool and dry environment, The outside environment may quickly hydrate your baby and can cause peeling or breaking of the skin.
It is a long lasting autoimmune disease accompanied by the patches of abnormal skin. These patches may be dry, itchy, and scaly. Children who have adults with the psoriasis are likely to get it genetically.
Symptoms of Dry Skin:
Here are a few symptoms that your child with dry skin commonly exhibit.
● You may find rough, flaky patches on your child’s skin
● Children usually get the dry skin over the face, arms, and legs.
● Cracks might develop if your child’s skin is very dry. This leads to a very painful situation
● You may notice bleeding in the severe cases of cracking
● A skin condition called Eczema may develop out of your baby itchy and red skin. This condition develops patches in elbow creases, behind the knees or in the face.
Home Remedies for Dry Skin in Babies:
Here are a few natural remedies to avoid dry skin in babies:
Breast Milk protects your baby from health conditions like constipation, diarrhea, and stomach upset. It is well known to treat various kinds of skin allergies like Eczema or dry skin.
Put a small quantity of breastmilk over the dry areas and massage gently.
Breastmilk can also help your baby to get relief from the following conditions:
● Cough and cold
2. Almond oil:
Almond oil helps in promoting the health of the heart, and stabilizes the blood sugar levels. It is a good moisturizer for the hair and the skin. It helps to protect your skin from the harmful radiations of the skin.
Take a few drops of almond oil and apply it on the dry areas of the skin. Avoid the almond oil with fragrance as they may contain the added ingredients. Vitamin E present in the almond oil helps in nourishing and moisturizing the skin.
3. Aloe vera:
It is highly inflammatory and is rich in antioxidants, enzymes, Vitamin A and C. It is a natural moisturizer with antibacterial and antifungal properties. It works well to deal with dry skin in child.
It is best to use fresh aloe vera gel from the plant which does not have any side effects on your baby. Aloe vera plant grows quickly and it is best idea to have this plant in the winter.
How to Use Aloe Vera gel for your baby’s skin:
Cut a small piece of aloe vera and place the small quantity of the gel on your baby’s skin and gently rub it till it disappears completely.
4. Coconut Oil:
This is one of the natural treatments for dry baby skin. Coconut oil has several potential benefits for the skin. It helps in healing the wounds, and reduces the inflammation. Medium chain fatty acids of the coconut oil are the rich source of antimicrobial properties.
Massage the dry areas of your baby’s skin with the few drops of coconut oil.
It can be used once or twice a day. You can use coconut oil for your baby before and after the bath.
Humidifiers add desired amounts of moisture to the air and creates optimal breathing conditions. This helps your baby to get relief from the dry and irritated skin. Humidifiers allow your baby to sleep comfortably and retards the build up of mucus.
6. Keep your baby hydrated:
Breastfeed your baby frequently. For the babies above 1 year offer the fluids like water, juice, and milk. Make sure that you do not offer your baby any kind of fluids other than breastmilk below 6 months of age.
This is one of the best dry skin remedies for babies. Avocado’s pulp is a rich source of antioxidants that help in moisturizing your skin. Being the source of Vitamin E it can be used to treat the dry skin and chapped lips.
Mash the Avocado and apply it over your baby’s dry skin and wash it off with lukewarm water after 10 minutes.
Oats have antioxidant and anti inflammatory properties. They help to treat the dead cells on the skin and get relief from the dry skin.
How to use:
● Make fine powder out of the oats
● Add 2-3 tablespoons of oat powder to the bathtub and allow it to soak for 10-15 minutes.
● Be cautious while bathing your child in the tub as the oats make the bathtub slippery.
9. Use Petroleum Jelly:
Massage the dry areas of your baby’s skin with the thick layer of petroleum jelly. It helps the skin to lock the moisture.
10. Calendula Oil:
Calendula oil has anti fungal, anti inflammatory, and antibacterial properties that plays a prominent role in soothing the Eczema, and to get relief from the diaper rashes.
Take a few drops of calendula oil and gently massage it over your baby’s dry skin. Use this oil after consulting your doctor especially when your baby has Eczema.
It is rich in antioxidants and has antibacterial properties. It can not be used for the children below the age of 12 months.
It can be used along with the oatmeal to treat the dry skin. Apply it as a face mask and wash it off with lukewarm water after sometime.
12. Sesame Oil:
Sesame oil is rich in linoleic acid. It has anti bacterial, anti inflammatory, and antioxidant properties.
Massage this oil gently on your baby’s skin. This oil can easily penetrate into your baby’s skin and offers utmost comfort.
Yogurt contains lactic acid and can be used to treat the dry skin of your baby. Yogurt helps in removing the dark circles and dead cells. Yogurt moisturizes the skin.
Mix the yogurt with honey and apply it as the face pack on your baby’s skin. This remedy can not be used in the babies below 1 year.
Tips to avoid dry skin in babies:
Here are a few tips to avoid the dry skin and promote the soft skin in your baby:
● Avoid using the harsh and potent soaps that drain away the natural oils of the skin.
● Avoid rubbing with a towel as the friction exerted by rubbing may further stimulate the skin peeling.
● Change your baby’s diaper more often.
● Limit your baby’s bath with lukewarm water for 25 minutes.
● Use water dispersible bath oils to your baby’s bath water. Avoid bath oils with the antiseptics unless your child is diagnosed with infections.
● Apply baby lotion or the moisturizer soon after the bath while your baby’s skin is still wet and then pat dry instead of rubbing.
● Use the ointments and moisturizers with the fewer added ingredients.
● Use any skin products that are fragrance free.
● Keep the bath time short and use the warm water which is not too hot.
● Dress your child in cotton clothes to avoid any kind of irritation.
● Use the laundry detergents that are meant for your baby’s sensitive skin.
When to see a Doctor for Dry Skin in Your child?
Dry skin is a normal condition and it is not painful. It can be treated with the help of simple home remedies. You should take your child to the doctor in the following conditions:
● If the condition does not improve even two weeks after using the home tips
● If you notice that the dryness is getting more worse
● If you notice any pus or pain in the cracks of the skin
● If you notice bleeding from the cracks.
In conclusion, dry skin in children might not be harmful. Severe conditions of the dry skin may create discomfort for your baby and disturb the child’s daily routine. Moisturize your baby’s skin and keep it away from the infections and irritants.