Written by Cara Barilla
In today’s modern world we are constantly being surrounded by false advertisement for the correct application of your child’s cleanliness. Whether it states “organic” when it’s really not, advertises as gentle cleansing when if you turn over to the labelled ingredients you may find strong alcohol, detergents, parabens, sulphites and other harsh content.
It’s best to understand the true needs of the proper precautions for child’s hygiene, where on your baby’s body you should clean and how to clean certain areas, with what tools and what , how often and the proper precautions and application to use. Below are some effective methods not only to sustain healthy baby cleanliness, but to also prevent illness and poor hygiene.
Every body part needs to be taken with proper care: Clean your child’s gums & tongue by using water and a cloth after morning and evening feeds to get the most hygienic results. Rub front and back of their teeth whilst using lukewarm water. At 12 months you can use a soft child safe toothbrush to clean their teeth with lukewarm water around twice a day. Specialized child and infant scissors, clippers or a filer is helpful to remove excess nail length and sharp areas. It’s helpful if your partner helps you at this point if your baby moves a lot. Or you can do so when your child is sleeping if they are a deep sleeper. Always wash your hands thoroughly before holding your little one’s umbilical cord. Clean the area softly with some lukewarm water and a cloth. Ensure the stump is dry after bathing by patting the stump softly with a soft baby towel.
Always read the label: it’s crucial to prevent allergy, eczema and other irritations by always reading the label. Try to stay away from product ingredients such as detergents, perfume, alcohol, parabens, sulphates and sulphites. If you are making your own baby products its best to consult your local dermatologist, skin specialist and natural skin clinician to determine what is best suitable for children and to cater for their age. When storing moisturizes, oils, soap, other creams and tools always use a bpa free container. Keep your containers dated at all times to review when it’s best to dispose of.
Boys and girls have different needs: cleaning a boy is very different to cleaning a little girl for example; when bathing it’s best not to leave your little girl in the bath for too long as this can lead to UTI’s as the harsh detergents can creep into their body as your little girls uterus is still forming its best to have quick baths or shower play time. When bathing your little girl, dampen a cotton ball, gently place her legs a little apart to wipe amid the labia area with the soft damp baby towel. Always start at the front and gently wipe backwards. For your little boy, softly rinse the genital area with lukewarm water whilst bathing. Give your little ones some ‘nappy-free’ exposure to air the skin thus preventing nappy rash.
Make a schedule for hygiene checks: once a month is best to get regular checks from your local gp. They will look at their genital region, face, creases, ears, eyes and mouth to determine the progression and take precautions for any health issue which needs to be managed. Always record your baby’s health progression in their health book or blue book. This certainly includes hygiene checkups.
No matter how cautious a parent can be, caring and monitoring for your children can be a difficult one and very contradictory. You will be getting all sorts of different advice from different professionals which may or may not clash with each other which can leave you wondering what decision to make. The best decision is to understand your family’s unique situation, record all necessary information and decide what is best for your unique scenario. Speak to your local gp or heath care professionals if you see some red flags. The best thing to do is to not leave concerns astray.