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Baby Skincare 101  
Answers to Five Common Questions about Baby's Skin


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Gerber Life Family Times Archive

HealthLike many new parents, you may be confused about how to properly take care of your baby's skin. What kind of baby cream and lotion do you need to have on hand? Do you need special detergent for baby's laundry? How do you treat infant rash, baby acne or eczema?

Here are some answers to five common questions that parents have about caring for their baby's skin:

1. Should I use natural skincare products or a particular baby cream on my infant?

Your baby's skin is much more sensitive than an adult's. That's because it's up to five times thinner than an adult's skin. It's important, therefore, to take special care with baby's skin. Although there are many kinds of baby cream on the market, the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) suggests avoiding using skincare products on babies that contain a lot of fragrance or chemicals since these can irritate their skin. Rather, use hypoallergenic products that are intended for babies.

2. Should I bathe my baby every day?

Babies don't need a bath every day as long as you keep the diaper area clean. Bathe your baby no more than three times a week so that his or her skin doesn't become dry. After the bath, pat your baby dry with a towel and apply a hypoallergenic, fragrance-free moisturizer.

3. How do I treat my baby's dry skin and infant rashes?

For the first month of life, babies have flaky skin that looks dry. After that, dry, scaly skin on the face, behind the knees and in the bends of elbows could be eczema—check with your pediatrician to make sure. Mild eczema on baby may not require treatment, although your pediatrician may recommend over-the-counter or prescription baby cream for more severe cases.

4. Do I need to use to use a special laundry detergent for my baby's clothes and bedding?

For babies with highly sensitive skin, you may, but you can wash most babies' laundry along with laundry from the rest of the family. Many parents choose dye-free and fragrance-free detergents for baby so as not to irritate the infant's sensitive skin.

5. How do I treat baby acne?

Baby acne—pronounced white or red bumps that appear on baby's cheeks or forehead—often appears during the first three or four weeks of life due to hormonal changes taking place. Never squeeze the bumps. Rather, wash baby's face daily with a mild, fragrance-free baby cleanser, and avoid baby cream, lotion and oil, says the AAP. Generally, baby acne clears up on its own within a few months.


American Academy of Pediatrics:

Baby Skin Basics

Bathing Your Newborn

Articles are provided for the general interest of our readers. Gerber Life Insurance is not responsible for any content and recommends that you consult the appropriate professional with any questions or concerns you may have concerning any financial or health related issues.

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