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A pediatric dermatologist answers questions about baby skin | My BabyMy Star

Babies are reputed to have the softest and most cuddly skin. That may well be true. But it’s also true that little ones’ skin can be prone to rashes, eczema, acne and more.

“Newborn skin is inherently much more sensitive because it’s thinner than adult skin and has lower lipid expression,” says Sheilagh Maguiness, MD, a pediatric dermatologist. The maturation process can take up to two years, during which time Maguiness explains that babies are more prone to skin irritation from chemicals and ingredients.

Your job during this time is to learn how to treat common skin concerns and minimize potential irritants – and we can help on both fronts. To help parents take care of their babies’ skin, Maguiness answered our FAQs on everything from skin flares to sunscreen to bath-time best practices. She also suggests checking out Pipette’s range of clean baby skincare products, all of which are pediatrician approved and dermatologically tested. (We love a good expert recommendation! Some of the most popular eyedropper products are linked below.)

In general, when it comes to nurturing your child’s skin, it can help to look to the body’s natural moisturizers for guidance: Babies are born with goo, a thick cream rich in squalene, to moisturize your child’s skin Keeping babies hydrated while in the womb. Squalane (with an “a”) derived from sugar cane is structurally identical to what’s produced by your baby’s skin.

Mimicking cheesecake, Squalane is an incredible moisturizer that’s perfect for even the most sensitive skin. By including squalane in lotions, sunscreen, body washes and more, Pipette helps restore your baby’s skin to its natural balance. At the same time you habit Find one of the ingredients that will give a red flag from Maguiness.

Here are Maguiness’ tips to show your baby’s skin the tender loving care it deserves.

Common skin problems

What skin problems usually resolve on their own or can be treated at home?

  • Several common rashes: Erythema toxicum neonatorum and transient pustular melanosis are two harmless conditions. They usually appear in the first few hours or days after birth and present as hive-like pink bumps or hyperpigmented patches with small pustules. These eruptions usually go away on their own and do not require treatment.
  • Baby Acne: This can show up between two and three weeks of age. This is usually seen on the head and neck as small pink bumps or pustules with some scaling. Baby acne is not Is correct Acne because there are no blackheads and there is no scarring. Baby acne is actually a reaction to Malassezia yeast on the skin and is usually mild. However, if it is more extensive or lasts longer than two months, you should see your doctor as there are treatments that can help.
  • cradle cap: Usually this shows up as an adherent yellowish scale on the baby’s scalp. It’s helpful to bathe your child regularly and apply an oil (like sunflower oil) to moisturize the scales and encourage desquamation. Again, it’s usually temporary, but if it’s severe, red, or associated with oozing or oozing see your doctor as this could be a sign of a bacterial infection or early eczema.

What are signs you should see a doctor about a baby’s skin problem?

If you think your child’s rash is lasting longer than it should, or if they experience redness, blisters, oozing or oozing, please contact your doctor. In addition, any widespread or widespread rash that appears itchy or uncomfortable should be checked out by your doctor.

What’s the best way to help baby eczema?

For infants prone to eczema, pediatric dermatologists usually recommend the following:

1. Frequent bathing of infants, daily or every other day, with non-detergent, gentle, liquid cleansers that are hypoallergenic and fragrance-free.

2. Then apply a fragrance-free and hypoallergenic lotion from head to toe.

This process is what we call “soaking and smearing” and it’s a great technique for locking water into baby’s skin and preventing loss of surface water.

What is contact dermatitis?

Contact dermatitis is the presence of inflammation in the baby’s skin caused by an irritant or a true allergen. It presents as red, sometimes scaly, itchy patches on the skin. The most common areas where irritant or allergic contact dermatitis occurs in babies are the face and diaper area. There are many things that can cause irritation, including chemicals, preservatives, fragrances, essential oils, and just plain old urine and stool.

Is there a connection between skin problems and food allergies?

The last five to ten years have seen great advances in our understanding of all allergic diseases. It turns out that a structural defect in the skin barrier is one of the main reasons babies develop atopic dermatitis and food allergies. A baby’s skin barrier is extremely important! It needs to be well hydrated and free of inflammation to function properly – so it can keep allergens and microbes out. When baby’s skin barrier isn’t perfect, it can let these things through.

If infants are predisposed to eczema due to a compromised skin barrier, they may become food sensitized through the skin, leading to increased food allergies. Talk to your pediatrician about introducing foods early at 4 months of age. This is the recommended way to reduce food allergies in babies.

Baby skin care recommendations

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What types of products do you recommend for sensitive skin?

I recommend keeping things very simple. Always opt for products that are gentle, fragrance-free and hypoallergenic.

If your child has dry, sensitive skin prone to eczema, consider using a gentle, unscented laundry soap. I also recommend skipping dryer sheets and fabric softener for most babies, especially those with more sensitive skin. Cotton clothes are soft and breathable, while synthetic fabrics and wool can cause overheating or cause more friction, which can make babies itchy.

What ingredients in children’s skincare products should parents avoid?

I firmly believe that unscented products are best. I would also recommend avoiding sulfates, essential oils, parabens and alcohols. Referring to baby cleansers, these contain surfactants, which are the foam/soap ingredient of every baby wash. There are certain surfactants that are gentler and some that are harsher. I would recommend avoiding baby detergents where the first ingredient is cocamidopropyl betaine, a harsher surfactant that can cause dryness or even allergic contact dermatitis.

What should parents pay attention to when buying sunscreen?

There are many ingredients in sunscreen, ranging from chemical to mineral. For small children, I recommend avoiding mineral sunscreens, such as those with zinc oxide or titanium dioxide as active ingredients.

Most spray or aerosol sunscreens contain mostly chemical sunscreens, so these should be avoided on babies. It’s also recommended to stick to fragrance-free and hypoallergenic sunscreens, there are many great options in creams, lotions and sticks, all of which are safe for infants and young children.

But don’t forget that applying sunscreen is only one component of sun protection. Sun protection clothing is really important, so get those wide-brimmed hats and rash guards out when you head to the beach. Seek shade and avoid exposure when the UV index is high.

Bath time tips

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How often should you bathe your baby?

I also recommend frequent bathing for babies with sensitive skin. Daily to every other day is fine as long as you apply a head-to-toe moisturizer right after bathing to seal in all that water. Remember, you don’t need a cleaner every time. Even pure water will clean your baby!

Studies have shown that frequent bathing and using emollients can help reduce the signs and symptoms of eczema in babies. I also find this very helpful for preventing and treating cradle cap and baby acne.

How Long Should You Bathe Your Baby?

Five to ten minutes is ideal for a bath. The number one way to keep babies’ skin from drying out after their bath is to apply a moisturizer right after their bath while the skin is still damp to lock in moisture and prevent surface water loss. It’s also important to use a gentle, hypoallergenic cleanser, or skip the cleanser altogether if your child has very dry skin.

How often should you wash your baby’s hair?

A few times a week is usually enough to wash your baby’s hair. Still, make sure you don’t ignore the scalp during regular bath time! Wetting the scalp encourages natural desquamation and is helpful in preventing cradle cap, especially if you then moisten the scalp with an oil such as sunflower oil.

When should you apply lotion or diaper cream to your baby?

Immediately after bathing is the best time to apply a moisturizing cream or ointment. I recommend applying a moisturizer to your baby’s skin after patting them dry while the skin is still damp. This helps lock in that moisture and in turn works to prevent water loss from the skin’s surface.

I also recommend putting on a diaper barrier at every diaper change. I like ointments like petroleum jelly, but some diaper creams with zinc oxide can also help as long as they’re unscented.

Many thanks to dr. Maguiness for sharing her expertise with us! Learn more about Pipette’s research-based, family-approved skincare products on their website and save 40% with code MATERNAL at checkout.

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