Saturday, March 12, 2016
Every baby is born with a fine, super delicate skin, yet curiously enough, beyond the first few years of childhood, really excellent skins are comparatively rare, not only the complexion, but the skin of the entire body.
Very tiny babies do not need much soap to cleanse thoroughly the little pores and scalp, but it must be of the very purest quality. The hands are a more intelligent wash-cloth than the finest linen. An excellent way to wash the baby is to lather him all over with the hands, then rinse him quickly, and dry as quickly as possible. "All over" does not mean the face, only the body and scalp! The face is washed first in water alone and immediately dried.
The bath is given in the morning to very small infants; after three months they rest better if it is given at night. After the evening bath an oil rub is very beneficial and relaxing, and keeps the skin in splendid condition, and is fattening as well. Use warm oil, olive oil or sweet oil or a very pure skin food or face cream, and massage gently but thoroughly. Then dust with the finest baby powder that can be procured.
Underclothes And Skin Health
A very essential aid to skin health is the frequent changing of underclothes. A baby should have a clean little shirt morning and night, and during exceptionally warm weather it is wise to change him when one changes the diaper, for more often than hot the shirt will be found wet through. In winter when both shirt and band are worn they should also be changed night and morning. Wet, soiled clothing next to the skin is a great irritant. A very young infant is, of course, handled as little as possible, and usually changed only before feedings.
Every mother learns the care of baby's eyes, nose, ears and mouth before the nurse leaves. She should learn too, the attention that should be paid to her fingernails and hands before touching baby's eyes. Baby's scalp must also come in for a share of attention. It must be kept clean with pure soap and cool, boiled water, and oiled frequently, and if cradle-cap appears it must be checked at once under a doctor's advice.
Every baby is entitled to comfort, from his little pink toes to the fuzz on top of his head. This can only be accomplished by constant care, common sense and a set routine. There is no virtue in doing a thing one day and neglecting it the next. Each day should be a pattern of the one before and the one to follow, and a mother cannot find it difficult to plan her day so that half an hour in the morning and another at night belong wholly to the care of a baby's skin.