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Caring For Baby's Skin in the Early Months

By: Jo Johnson - Updated: 29 Apr 2013 | comments*Discuss
Hygiene Needs Baby Drying Properly

Becoming a parent for the first time (or even second) can be very daunting and suddenly finding yourself responsible for another person’s hygiene can cause anxiety. In actual fact a baby’s hygiene needs are fairly easily maintained as long as you are organised and have everything ready beforehand.

Washing and Bathing

A newborn baby does not necessarily need to be bathed every day unless of course your baby enjoys it and you find that bath time is a great way of bonding with your baby. Every other day or even Every three days (unless of course baby has an accident that warrants a full body wash) should be sufficient as you can simply wash your baby in between.

A baby should be given a top and tail wash every morning and in the evening if needed.A small bowl of warm water should be enough to wash your baby’s face, hands, creases, naval and groin.Start by wiping over the baby’s face and drying thoroughly. Follow by washing baby’s hands making sure that you get in between the fingers as milk and saliva can build up in these areas.

Baby’s can sweat a lot, or you may find that milk has trickled into the creases such as under the arms, right under the chin or within any folds of body fat and skin. These should be wiped over and dried properly.The navel area can be wiped over to make sure that it is kept clean and to encourage the stump of the cord to be released. Do not put pressure on the cord or try and pull it off as this will occur naturally when it is ready. It is vital that it is kept dry after the wash to special attention should be paid to this.

Lastly the groin can be cleaned. Although you may have cleaned the area several times during the day when you are changing the nappy, it should be done again as part of the wash and incorporated into the daily routine for life.Again drying is important.

There is no need to buy wash cloths or other wise for carrying out a newborn baby wash as some cotton wool balls are ideal as they are disposable and very soft to the baby’s skin.

The Importance of Drying Properly

Equally as important as maintaining baby’s hygiene is making sure that your baby is dried properly after the wash. This is because any dampness left will result in your baby getting chilly, increasing the chances of infection and sores developing.Try not to rub your baby’s skin, instead simply pat it with a soft clean towel.Make sure the room in which you are bathing baby is warm enough for baby to be naked in during the bath or wash as babies lose their body heat very quickly and may get cold and it will also help to make the experience more enjoyable for both baby and you.

Using Talc

Not all new parents use talc and often it is not necessary, however sometimes it can help if it is used on the bottom or in the creases after they are dried to make sure baby doesn’t get sore from any build up of moisture that may develop.Do not however use talc if your baby is sore already, has a rash or has any areas of broken skin as the ingredients may make it worse and cause discomfort. In these instances, plain warm water is the best option.

As your Baby Gets Older

As your baby progresses from a newborn into an older baby, you may find that the routine now takes a few minutes as you have got used to it and bath time is now a lot of fun.It is possible to buy several types of bath chairs for babies which means that although they cannot be left alone, they have more independence and security whilst in the bath and will enjoy the experience more.

Looking after your baby’s hygiene needs is very important and there are some things to remember but overall it should be an enjoyable and as you get used to your routine, you’ll find it doesn’t take very long and you become quite an expert.

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