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Be Gentle To Baby's Delicate Skin

Armen Hareyan's picture

Baby's skin is particularly sensitive during the first few months after birth, leaving it prone to a wide array of dermatological conditions. According to experts, new parents should be aware of the common skin issues seen in infants and how to treat or manage these conditions:

-- Dry Skin: "This is the most common skin disorder in babies and young children, and occurs because the sebaceous glands are not producing enough oil into the skin," says Erin Welch, MD, assistant professor of dermatology at the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center in Dallas. To help maintain healthy skin, use gently formulated cleansing and moisturizing products to help seal in moisture, particularly those that are phthalate-free. "When washing your baby, keep water temperatures warm or tepid, and use a gently formulated cleanser like pHisoderm Tear-Free Cream Wash to protect against dryness and leave baby's skin smelling fresh and clean." Blot baby dry with a clean towel and apply a baby-friendly moisturizer to further hydrate the skin.

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-- Diaper Rash: The classic signs of diaper rash include small red dots on a baby's buttocks, groin and between skin folds. According to the Lansinoh Medical Advisory Board, the keys to preventing diaper rash are changing diapers often (cloth and disposable, alike) and using hypoallergenic, alcohol-free wipes. When changing a baby, clean the area with water and make sure it is completely dry before putting on a new diaper. Use a diaper rash treatment that protects and conditions the skin at the same time, such as new Lansinoh Diaper Rash Ointment that contains a unique formula of Lansinoh's HPA Lanolin, the world's purest lanolin, microfine zinc oxide and dimethicone -- a unique blend that offers triple protection.

-- Cradle Cap: During the first three months of life, some babies will develop cradle cap. The symptoms include scaly, dry patches of flaky skin on the head, ear, eyebrows and eyelids, along with itching. Dr. Welch suggests rubbing baby oil onto the affected area and then cleaning it with a soft brush or washcloth. For many babies, this is often a temporary condition, not lasting more than a few weeks.

-- Heat Rash: This eruption of little dots and tiny pimples over a baby's body often occurs when a baby overheats from wearing too many layers of clothing. Their underdeveloped pores become blocked so that sweat cannot get out, leading to itching and inflamed skin. If your baby is experiencing heat rash, apply cold water compresses to the affected areas, dress the baby in light, breathable clothing (layer so you can remove clothing as necessary), and try to keep him in airy rooms or shady spots during warm weather.