Of late, whenever I took little S out to the garden, he would often return with rashes, particularly on his feet. Initially, I ignored it as mosquito bites and thought that it would go away after a couple of days. However, the mosquito bites started changing their colour. Though there was no pus but still it was more of dark spots now.
Worried like any other parent, I immediately took him to his paediatrician for a check-up. Turned out these were allergies. I had previously gotten his allergy tests done, and a few allergens were detected for which I had already taken the requisite medication from the doctor. The doctor again instructed me that at least for next few years, I need to be careful about his skin. This was because kids have a delicate pH balance of their skin. It was probably the first time I had heard about pH balance. As the doctor explained, it is the ‘potential of Hydrogen’ that measures the alkalinity or acidity of the human skin. While we often assume a neutral pH 7 as ideal, it is not so for the little ones. Their skin is of pH 5.5 and very delicate. Thus, keeping in mind his sensitive skin condition, we were asked to avoid soap; limit his bath time; avoid public baths or swimming pools at least till he turns 10 and to always keep his skin moisturised.
When I had first learnt about pH balance of skin at the dermatologist’s clinic, I researched further about it. The pH is measured on the pH bar, 0 indicating acidic and 14 indicating alkaline. The pH of water is 7 which is neutral. Normal, healthy skin has a pH of 5.5 which is slightly acidic. Babies are generally born with a pH of 7. But it takes nearly 3 months for the baby’s protective acid mantle to develop after which it becomes pH 5.5. Therefore, any pH value which is higher than 5.5 can severely damage the little ones’ skin. From here on started my quest to protect my son’s delicate and sensitive skin. And, one of the biggest challenge in this journey was to find the right kind of products with a pH of 5.5. This included finding the perfect skin moisturiser to keep his skin well hydrated for long. I always prefer home remedies to external cosmetics or creams but with a 4-year-old naughty kid, it is next to impossible. Initially, I tried applying Turmeric in Coconut Oil. That is one skin treatment that I swear by. However, applying the same to a toddler turned out to be messy. The process of application was tough. Secondly, any place that he went, like a new bride he left marks of his yellow coloured palm. Though the most effective, I finally decided to use a moisturising cream as, by now, I had already run out of all ideas for natural treatments.
Exhausted, I eventually checked with the doctor again regarding a perfect alternative I could use for him. She recommended using Sebamed moisturising lotion for it maintains the pH of the baby’s skin. I immediately looked up for the product online. No sooner had I found it on a popular online retail portal, I ordered the Sebamed Baby Cream Extra Soft. This German brand produces a skincare range with a pH of 5.5 and has been developed in collaboration with dermatologists. This makes it suitable for those with sensitive skin, like my son’s. As soon as I received it, I excitedly tried it out. The lotion was smooth and thick at the same time. All I had to do was just squeeze a coin-sized amount on my palm and I was able to cover a substancial area of my son’s skin. Just this much of the product worked wonders for my son’s skin, leaving it soft and moisturised for a longer period of time. However, I would recommend using it in small amounts only as an excessive amount would leave the skin oily. I have been using the same for about a week now and I can see the difference in his skin. He longer itches that much too. Thank you Sebamed!