Babies: what amazing creatures! They are born with the ability to see and hear almost as well as full-grown adults. They triple their size in their first year. And by the age of two, the average baby has had more than 7,200 diaper changes! What effect does all of that diaper changing have on babies’ skin?
That waxy coating a baby is born with is called vernix, and it is the best skin defense in the world! (Never wash it off! Massage it in!)
Your baby’s skin is 20-30% thinner than an adult’s, and it loses moisture much more quickly. Because it is so thin, the lotions, soaps, shampoos, creams, pastes, detergents, and ointments we use penetrate much more readily and quickly–for better or for worse. More about that in just a moment!
Your baby’s skin is also more prone to infection than an adult’s because his immune system has not had time to build up resistance to common microbes. Friction from cloth or disposable diapers can provide microbes with a weak spot in your baby’s dermal defenses. Add feces and urine, and you have a closed, moist environment with a high pH (alkaline or basic) that encourages fecal enzymes to further irritate baby’s skin while microorganisms thrive.
Artificial fragrances, harsh detergents (“hypoallergenic” does not equal “gentle”), chemicals in many best-selling soaps/shampoos, and preservatives are all prime candidates for irritating a baby’s skin.
Not even “baby” powders are safe. (The Environmental Working Group has an excellent database of cosmetics, their ingredients, and their safety. There is an entire section for babies and moms.) The American Academy of Dermatology (AAD) recommends not using powders on babies’ skin; airborne talc can cause lung problems while plant-based powders feed fungal infections.
As parents, we owe it to our children to be aware of the chemicals we are buying in the laundry soaps and softeners, shampoos, lotions, ointments, pastes, and ointments that come into contact with our babies’ thin and vulnerable skin.
Babies are most susceptible between 8 and 10 months, but diaper rash can occur at any time. Though there are many causes, there are two things parents can provide that will help: air and barrier creams/ointments/pastes.
According to the Mayo Clinic:
“Give your baby as much diaper-free time as possible so that his or her skin can have a chance to stay dry and start healing. When you do use diapers, change them frequently and apply a diaper rash cream or ointment to act as a barrier between your baby’s skin and a dirty diaper.”
AAD also recommends keeping it simple when treating babies’ skin for diaper rash: warm water and a washcloth for cleaning, plenty of air for drying, and a barrier cream, preferably with zinc oxide.
With Aloe Baby’s Tender Defender, you can give your baby both the air and barrier her bottom needs. But she will also get natural botanicals that support wound healing and skin regrowth. When you use Aloe Baby’s (patent pending) approach to diaper rash treatment, you will be providing both a bio-active nutritive layer to support healing and important air drying time before applying a barrier cream.Tags: active ingredients, aloe, aloe baby, Aloe vera, American Academy of Dermatology, antifungal agent, apricot kernel oil, artificial fragrances, Baby, baby skin, barrier cream, barrier creams, biology, botanical skin care, carrier oils, cloth diaper safe, corporate responsibility, Cosmetics, diaper, diaper changes, diaper rash, disposable diapers, environmental working group, essential oils, fair trade, fungal infections, gamma linoleic acid, harsh detergents, Health, Human Interest, Irritant diaper dermatitis, laundry soaps, Mayo Clinic, microbes, moist environment, motherhood, natural, natural ingredients, niaouli, organic, organic ingredients, pastes, patent pending, problem solving, Rash, research, seed oil, skin care products, strong women, sustainability, tender defender, Topical, trap moisture, wildcrafted