Your baby's skin is quite thin when he is first born—so thin that it has a transparent, pink glow to it no matter what color it is. As your child grows, the skin will become thicker and protect against water loss, infections, absorption of toxins, and other traumas to the skin. In the first two to three weeks, the skin evolves rapidly.
When your baby is born he moves from a warm and wet environment to a dry and colder one. The skin helps to regulate your baby's temperature from birth on.
At any given time, between 12 to 15 percent of infants have diaper rash so badly that it requires special attention. Keeping the area free of dirt helps.
Good news: your baby's often strange-looking, "Where-did-that-come-from?" rash is likely harmless. But if you're concerned, be sure to check out our Common Baby Rashes & Kid Skin Conditions graphic guide.
Tips for Bathing Your Beauty
Bathing Baby cleans away the obvious, but it also serves another purpose: bonding! It's a major way the little one and her adoring parents get to know each other through the gentle touching and stroking that occurs at bath time.
Test the water temperature before setting Baby in the tub. And four fingers worth of very comfortable water is plenty.
Support Baby so she feels secure (and so will you!) with one hand and wash with the other, working quickly—especially the first few times so you both get used to it. Though soap is recommended for use on the hands and bottom daily on the crawling baby, make sure you don't use it so often on other areas that her skin dries out.
Use the right soap. Confused about what soap to choose for your growing infant? Soaps contain ingredients that can be drying to skin. The pH your baby is born with helps protect against germs and can be rendered too low by the use of soap. Pediatricians say you are safest using a soap made specifically for babies that has no perfumes and is hypoallergenic.
Sponge baths should be used exclusively until the baby's umbilical cord (and circumcision) is completely healed. Baby's crib (using a waterproof changing pad) or other safe spot, such as a changing table, are best suited for these early baths.
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