skin problems

Winter Skin Problems

December 30, 2022

Sore, dry, chapped skin on little hands, faces, lips and noses – it looks so uncomfortable! But why do babies and children have more skin issues in the winter? And how can we help them? Michele from Mini First Aid shares some hints & tips.

Why do babies and children have more skin problems in winter?

·      Children’s skin is more permeable than adults, meaning it is more prone to dryness and irritation. It is also thinner which means it loses moisture much more quickly

·      Central heating during the winter months makes the atmosphere in our houses dry, and this in turn dries out your little one’s skin

·      Wind and cold weather outside further dry out skin, causing chapping that can result in rough, sore, red skin

How can I stop my child from getting sore winter skin? 

1.      Don’t bath them for too long or too often

Newborns don’t need a bath every day – in fact, 3 times a week is enough. Don’t keep them in the bath longer than 10 minutes as it starts to dry out the skin. Try and give nappy-free time as often as possible to reduce the risk of nappy rash – a warm bathroom and a soft fluffy towel after bath time are ideal for some nappy-free wiggle time!

2.      Don’t use fragrances

As far as possible don’t buy fragranced soaps/bubble baths- it’s so tempting to get something that smells amazing! But the most common irritant in children’s products is fragrances. So buy unfragranced products – your child’s skin will thank you!

3.      Use the right moisturiser

We use moisturisers liberally here and recommend ones with oils, few fragrances, and few chemical additives. For very dry skin with particularly rough patches, apply twice daily and pick an emollient-based cream – parents are often put off by thicker, greasier creams, but they really do provide an effective barrier, helping protect delicate skin from the elements. Or try organic coconut oil rubbed into your child’s skin and left on overnight for rough, sore patches of skin that can’t tolerate anything else – it really does work wonders!

4.      Take preventative measures for chapped lips

Don’t forget your little one’s lips and cheeks: dry air and windy weather can make exposed lips chapped and cheeks windburned, which looks and feels like sunburn. The best thing to do is apply a lip balm before exposure even happens

5.      Sunburn in babies and toddlers

It may be cold outside, but the sun still plays a big role in your baby’s winter skin care. Snow reflects up to 85 percent of the sun’s harmful rays, and even on a grey day, UV rays can still get through, so sun cream is important throughout the seasons. We recommend a factor 50 sun cream.

6.      Dry skin from alcohol gel 

Due to coronavirus, kids are using hand gels more than ever before and we recommend using a sanitiser without alcohol as this is really drying for children’s skin – it can also be very stingy on already chapped hands, ouch

Hope this helps, Michele x

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