Your baby’s skin is scrumptiously soft, new and delicate. Therefore, it’s going to need a little additional protection during the harsh, cold winter months. The good news is, it’s pretty easy to ensure baby’s skin is unaffected by the harsh winter weather.
Below, you’ll discover everything you need to know to help your little one avoid common winter-related skin issues.
Protecting Baby Against Heat Rash
Heat rash? In winter? Yep, believe it or not, heat rash isn’t just a problem you need to deal with during summer. As babies are particularly sensitive to changes in temperature, they can easily become overheated when you dress them in thick, warm winter clothing. So, how can you avoid winter triggered heat rash?
Obviously, you want to ensure your little one is warm, but how can you ensure they’re not too warm? The answer is layers. Dressing baby in layers of clothing enables you to easily take a layer off if they start getting too hot. As a general rule, it’s said that babies need one extra layer than adults do.
If baby does get heat rash, you could use a very low dose, hydrocortisone which you can purchase over the counter. However, it’s a good idea to check with your pediatrician or doctor beforehand given that hydrocortisone is a medication and not just a standard lotion. This also means it shouldn’t be used for more than two days. Your doctor will be able to give you the best advice on how to treat it however so be sure to talk to them first.
Bathe Them In Warm, Not Hot, Water
Ideally, baby should be given a bath each night as this really helps to settle them for bed, as well as keeping them nice and clean. However, as tempting as it might be, you should avoid running a hot bath in winter.
As with adults, the hot water can really dry out the skin in winter. So, it’s recommended you stick to warm water, as well as shortening bath time to around 5-10 minutes. The younger your baby, the shorter bath time should be in winter.
Protect Baby’s Lips
The last thing you typically think about when it comes to caring for your baby’s skin in winter is their lips. After all, baby’s lips tend to remain consistently wet with either drool or with remnants from a runny nose. However, this moisture can actually wear down the protective layer of the lips; especially in the cold winter months.
Once the protective layer has been worn down, your baby’s lips can become chapped and sore. To prevent it, you can use a little petroleum jelly or a natural, baby-friendly lip-balm. Again, it may be best to seek advice from your pediatrician before applying anything to baby’s lips, just to double check it’s safe to do so.
Make Use Of A Humidifier
Humidifiers are a godsend in winter. As the home is kept consistently heated throughout the colder months, it can really suck the moisture out of the air. This in turn can lead to severe dry skin and potentially also trigger skin conditions such as eczema.
Humidifiers help to keep the air moisturized and prevent dry skin conditions. Therefore, it’s worth placing one in baby’s bedroom overnight. Just be sure to change the water in the humidifier each day.
Don’t Forget The Mittens, Socks, Hat And Stroller Hood
When you’re heading out, as well as ensuring baby is dressed in layers, you’ll want to make sure their head, hands and feet are protected against the elements. Never leave home without ensuring your baby is wearing mittens, socks, a hat and a stroller hood. The stroller hood will protect your little one from the harsh winds, as well as the cold.
Just remember to keep checking your baby isn’t getting too hot. If they do show signs of getting overheated, try taking just a layer of clothing off the body, rather than the gloves and hat.
Moisturize Baby’s Cheeks
Another tip for when you venture outdoors, is to ensure your baby’s cheeks are moisturized. Like the lips, the cheeks can benefit from a thin layer of petroleum jelly. This is safe for baby’s skin, but you might want to double check with your doctor or pediatrician just to be sure.
It’s actually a good idea to moisturize all areas of your baby’s skin which are exposed to the elements. You should also moisturize your baby after a bath, while the skin is still a little damp. This is especially important if you are using an ointment rather than a cream. Ointments can be a little greasy, but you can reduce this by applying them when the skin is still a little wet.
Continue Using Sunscreen
You’d think in winter the last thing you need to worry about is sunscreen. However, while it may be cold, UV rays can still be pretty high throughout the winter months. Therefore, it’s a good idea to still apply sunscreen to baby’s skin prior to heading out.
It should contain at least a SPF30.It’s also worth noting that if baby is under six months old, you’ll also want to use a sunscreen which contains either a titanium dioxide or zinc oxide physical blocker. As with anything new however, it’s always worth seeking advice from a medical professional beforehand.
Keeping baby’s skin healthy in winter can be tricky due to the cold temperatures and lack of moisture in the air. However, the tips above will help to minimize the risk of winter-related skin issues. If you notice your baby’s skin is consistently red and dry, it would be worth visiting a doctor. They will be able to diagnose whether anything is wrong and if a medicated moisturizer may be needed.