Dealing With Dry Baby Skin

 The little one is teething. Just watching him you can tell he is terribly uncomfortable. In the mornings when he is usually playful and happy he lays in bed squirming in irritation. 

He clenches his jaw, rubs his face, pulls at his ears, then rolls over with his face in the mattress and lets out a frustrated growl. My heart breaks a little and I wish I could do more to help.

So far, teething has been tough on everyone in the house. During the last few weeks Kasper wakes up in the middle of the night, often more times than I can keep track of, and he still has no teeth to show for it. I can just imagine how frustrating it is for him to be so uncomfortable and not really understand why. I'll put more on how we cope with teething in a future post. 

If the difficulties of teething aren't bad enough its been cold out the last few days. Really cold. The result? A baby with incredibly dry skin. After our normal bath last night I noticed that the little one was itching himself all over, and his skin felt like paper. Again, my heart ached to see him struggle to get comfortable. But dry, itchy skin actually has a silver lining. This was a problem I could do something about. I was positive that I could fix this and provide at least a little relief and hopefully a better night's sleep for my already cranky little boy.

A few minuets of digging around in my kitchen and I found all the ingredients for a healing, moisturizing, restorative lotion that Kasper would love. I mixed up this lotion, slathered it on Mr. Squirmy, and saw immediate relief. He was a happy, albeit green baby. After a bath, and a quick clean up of the avocado mess, Kasper fell asleep for his morning nap and slept peacefully for 2 whole, consecutive hours. I'm going to count this as a win in the parenting book.

Honey is full of antioxidants and is a natural humectant which makes it great for soothing dry skin. Sunflower seed oil is rich in Vitamin E, and olive oil is a natural anti-inflammatory. By adding these two to the mix you are helping to sooth and heal the damage from all that scratching. Avocados contain lots of healthy fats that help to replenish skin's moisture and biotin, a vitamin required for healthy, smooth skin. Biotin deficiencies can cause redness and rashes on the skin. When you mix it all together you end up with a fragrant, luxurious lotion.

1 Large Avocado
1/4 Cup Raw Honey
1 Tbs Extra Virgin Olive Oil
1 Tbs Sunflower Seed Oil

Tip: This is MESSY. Be prepared to jump in the shower and throw in a load of laundry at the end of this whole thing. Try to clean up the avocado as soon as you can because once it dries, it is rather sticky and requires some scrubbing to remove.
Directions: Mash up the avocado then add all remaining ingredients. Transfer to blender and pulse until smooth.

Apply: Apply generously and massage into skin. Leave the mixture on for about 10 minuets, then rinse with cool water. (Very warm water can dry out baby's skin too)

I added several packages of an organic lavender tea to the tub before bathing Kasper. The lavender is calming and the antioxidants from tea help the healing process.

Tips for Preventing Dry Skin In Babies:

1. Limit Bath Time - If dry skin is a problem, don't bath baby daily. Try moving bath time to about twice a week, and using luke warm or even cool water to prevent essential oils being stripped from the skin in the tub.
2. Check Your Soap - Try a more mild, moisturizing soap. Lots of baby bars aren't actually any less harsh on the skin than soap for adults.
3. Keep Baby Covered - In cool, dry, weather, skin tends to dry out quickly. Keep baby covered up well with clothing and blankets while you're outside.
4. Think Light and Breathable - Dress baby in light, breathable fabrics like cotton or silk. As cozy as wool can be, it can irritate baby's sensitive skin.
5. Moisturize - Use a thick, natural moisturizer daily, if not more often. The thicker the better, that usually means it is more effective as a moisturizing agent.

Does your baby struggle with dry skin? What do you use to fix it? Do you buy a product or make your own? Let me know in the comments.

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