Baby Skin Care

The skin of a newborn baby resembles that of a peach: it is smooth and sweet smelling and rather delicate. The skin of a baby is thinner than that of an adult and needs to be handled with care.

Once your baby has entered this world their skin is vulnerable to all types of chemicals and substances which are potentially harmful. Plus their immune system is underdeveloped which leaves them at increased risk of a disease or infection.

Your little one is in dire need of protection at this time and that applies to all aspects of their health which includes their skin.

A baby's skin is soft, smooth and unlined which is how we all start out in life. But over time, our skin exhibits the ravages of time and the effects of our lifestyles which cause it to become lined, wrinkled and flabby.

(You have probably looked at your own skin as we speak)

But adult skin copes better with these external factors than a baby's skin. So it is important that you care for your little one's skin as soon as they are born.

Baby skin care routine

Your baby's skin is precious – which you are probably aware of so handle with care. Use cotton wool balls and water when cleaning your baby's skin and only use skin care products which are specially designed for babies.

Avoid using any creams or lotions which do not fall into this category as they may contain chemicals which are too harsh for delicate baby skin.

Use a special baby comb when cleaning or combing your baby's hair.

What appears to be the case is that parents are being encouraged to let their baby's skin become acclimatised to the environment and become thicker and stronger as a result. So go for the 'less is more' approach when using any skin care products.

The one exception to this is if your baby was overdue which often results in them having dry, cracked skin. If this is the case then avoid the temptation to slather on a baby cream or lotion as this will cause further problems. This type of skin is a natural response to the birth and as such will peel off after a few days leaving silky smooth skin.

Did you have a premature birth? If you did then you will be all too aware of the fragility of your tiny bundle which also applies to their skin. The skin of a premature baby is even more fragile than that of a 'normal' newborn so extra care is needed.

Continue to use water and cotton wool as mentioned above.

Cleaning baby's umbilical stump

This refers to the short stump left as a result of clamping the umbilical cord at birth. The doctor or midwife will have clamped the umbilical cord as soon as your little one was born in order to separate the two of them.

A plastic clamp or tie will have been fastened onto the stump which is removed when the stump has dried up and shrivelled in size. This happens a few days following the birth.

This little stump does fall off eventually leaving a small wound which heals to become your baby's belly button.

It is a good idea to keep the stump clean and dry to prevent the risk of an infection. Do this when you top and tail your little one and use a mild baby cream if the stump becomes messy (or if your baby has an accident!).

Dry the stump by patting it with a towel before dressing your baby in a clean nappy.