Newborn skin care

Newborn skin being most delicate and immature needs extra care. It needs appropriate level of hydration, good moisterization and gentle cleansing. Now the question is how to do it?
Let me put it in simplified way as Do’s and Don’ts:

DO’S

1. BATH: Lukewarm water (temp<37C) bathing would be ideal. Bathing should be started ideally after umbilical cord has fallen. Though preterm infants or low birth weight babies, it can be deferred till prolonged period (individualization is needed). In such cases plain lukewarm water sponge bath can be given once a day.
2. LOTION APPLICATON: Baby body lotion should be used once a day atleast to keep skin adequately moisturized
3. BODY MASSAGE: Body massage can be performed with simplest possible oil coconut oil being the best nourisher. Though few prefer using mustard oil. I personally recommend coconut oil as first choice followed by other branded commercial baby massage oils then lastly mustard, olive oil etc..
4. NAPPY AREA CARE: Clean it with either gentle wet wipes or cotton dipped in lukewarm water. If cleaning is needed frequently, you can apply coconut oil each time after cleaning so as to avoid maceration and rashes over local area.

DON’TS

1. POWDER: Usually I don’t recommend use of powder, but still if you wish to use it, use with fur duster to dust the powder over the area you wish to use it so as not to accumulate it in skin folds.
2. SCALP CARE: No regular soaping and shampooing of hair and scalp is recommended. Once or twice in week is enough, though clean it with water daily while bathing. Applying coconut oil is acceptable though not to pour oil in large quantity, use it just like oil massage elsewhere over the body.
3. OTHER APPLICATIONS: Kajal, besan, curd, etc. application over skin is not recommended. No oil instillation in any natural orifices (nose, ear, urinary sites, per anal) are recommended, not even umbilical cord.
4. RASHES: Many different types of rashes are common to happen over infant’s skin. Do not self-treat it, see nearby pediatrician to resolve your doubts as most are self-limiting which doesn’t need treatment but few can be as dangerous to need prolonged treatment.

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