Is your little one’s skin prone to irritation and rashes?
A child’s skin is soft and supple but also extremely sensitive to environmental irritants. Even though it is common for children to have skin problems, some have it more than their peers.
So how can you identify if your child has sensitive skin? While it is best to consult a pediatrician, there are certain tell tale signs that you can look out for:
- S/he has dry skin and gets recurrent rashes
- Diapers give him/ her rashes often
S/he suffers or has suffered from eczema or heat rash
“Young mothers can identify if their child has sensitive skin by looking for behavioural cues like kids not wanting to wear undergarments, constantly touching or scratching certain areas, or amongst younger kids crying or being irritable over a longer period. While you change them, bathe them be sure to check private areas, regions where diaper/innerwear sits for long time for signs of irritation.”- Guncha Khare, Cultural Director, Dextrus Workspace
While there are no definite ways to prevent your child’s skin sensitivity, one can always take appropriate measures to arrest the triggers. One of the easiest ways to tackle this problem is by ensuring that your munchkin wears sensory friendly clothing. Since innerwear is the first piece of clothing that touches your child’s skin, it becomes all the more pertinent to choose them wisely.
“When I was in the process of potty training my child four years ago, I found that the underwear options available from Indian manufacturers were too plaid and boring and uncomfortable to boot. Which was one of the driving forces to start Plan B - to provide a great option to Indian parents to buy comfortable, good quality, long lasting innerwear for their little ones, which were also fun to wear!”- Vaidehi, Co-founder, You Got Plan B
Here’s the role the right innerwear plays in dealing with skin sensitivity:
Uncomfortable fabrics are the leading causes of rashes and skin irritation. When it comes to choosing the right fabric for your child’s skin,100% cotton is the way to go. Apart from steering clear of synthetic fabrics, here are a few other things you need to make a note of while choosing the fabric:
- Antimicrobial and antibacterial properties. This keeps bacterial and fungal infections at bay
- It’s breathable 100% cotton that is bio-washed
- The dyes used in the fabric are Azo-free i.e. they are not toxic/carcinogenic
Perfect fit and comfort is what every child needs and these are the two main things one must look for while buying children’s innerwear.
“To protect your child’s sensitive skin, it is important to use fabrics that are soft and comfortable, and also breathable (especially in a tropical climate like India's); hence all our innerwear is made using 100% cotton. We also do not use scratchy clothing tags that may rub the skin - which is why our size labels are made of satin fabric that are soft to the touch and non irritating for the child's skin. We use elastics that do not leave a mark on the child's skin and is convenient to wear all day long. We have worked on the fit of our underwear and boxers over the years to ensure that it is comfortable to wear whether to lounge in or to play in,” Vaidehi adds on.
Often the latex in the elastic of underwear causes allergy which in turn leads to skin concerns. Good innerwear for kids with soft cotton elastic that doesn’t leave marks is what you should be looking for.
Seam is a place where stitches are used to join two pieces of fabric. At any point, if the seam is uncomfortable then it causes itchiness. Hence it is important to choose underwear, boxers, leggings and track pants with comfortable seams.
Often tags in innerwear can be rough and in turn cause irritation. Hence, it is important to look for underwear and vests with satin tags that don’t harm the skin.
Also, it is important to get innerwear that fits your child right otherwise underwear that don’t fit right can give wedgies and cause mental stress for the child subconsciously.
“While choosing my child's underwear the most important aspect is the material used and the fitting. Natural, soft cotton materials are preferred rather than synthetic. The fit has to be comfortable and airy to aid comfort. I avoid using elastics and prefer boxer styles.” says Guncha, mother of a 5 year old boy.
Apart from choosing the right innerwear, you also need to keep in mind the following things to help your child with sensitive skin:
- Always use dermatologically tested products and remember to do a patch test before applying any creams and lotions.
- Nourish their skin regularly with a moisturiser that is best suited for their skin type
- Ensure that they bathe in lukewarm water. Hot water removes the surface oils and makes the skin dry.
- Avoid laundry detergents with fragrances and other additives
- And lastly, each child has a unique set of triggers. Take your time to observe and identify them so that you can prevent them in future.
How do you protect your child’s sensitive skin? Let us know in the comments below.