Christmas is just round the corner and it’s a time for celebrations, family-gatherings and mince pies, and perhaps a little bit of peace and quiet. However, this time of year can be stressful for many, especially for parents following the arrival of a new baby. Navigating this family occasion can seem overwhelming, especially as mums and dads may also be contending with a minor baby ailment, like teething, colic and cradle cap.

Parenting on Female First

Parenting on Female First

A fifth (20%) of Brits already feel stressed in relation to their Christmas preparations, and a third (32%) are worried about the financial strain at Christmas time. For parents these worries are likely to be exacerbated, due to added pressure of looking after baby and their minor baby ailments; especially as at this time of year, ailments like dry scalp and sticky eyes can get worse, due to the colder weather. 

Recent research from baby ailment brand Dentinox shows that more than one in two parents feel on their own and uninformed when it comes to dealing with their baby’s minor ailments. Furthermore, 88% say that minor baby ailments can feel like major ailments as they directly impact their life. Understandably, seeing their baby in pain, sleepless nights and not knowing what’s wrong are the top three things that overwhelm parents.

Unfortunately, minor baby ailments don’t disappear over the Christmas break, so to help parents get a silent night this Christmas, Dentinox has teamed up with mum of one GP Dr Stephanie Ooi and parenting expert Rachel FitzD, to give parents some practical advice to help look after the little one, this festive season.

Some minor baby ailments will clear up on their own

“Remember that although some ailments don’t look particularly nice, they often aren’t uncomfortable, and will usually clear up on their own without need for medication,” explains Dr Stephanie Ooi. “For example, if your little one is teething you can try offering solid, not liquid-filled, teething rings or frozen banana to help soothe sore gums and if this doesn’t work, teething gum gels can help provide some relief. Additionally, using things like olive oil/ vegetable oil can help with a dry scalp or cradle cap, and cooled, boiled water can help relieve the symptoms of sticky eyes. However, if your baby doesn’t seem bothered by a minor ailment, then usually there isn’t anything to worry about. Of course, if you are at all concerned, or any condition becomes worse, or your little one has a fever, lethargy or has irritability, be sure to visit and speak to your healthcare professional.”

A minor ailment may be the result of the time of year

“As the weather gets colder, your little one may experience minor ailments like dry scalp and sticky eyes,” says Dr Stephanie Ooi. “Baby’s scalps can get aggravated by the cold weather, and often babies can get sticky eyes in the winter months  as result of blocked tear ducts, caused by the common cold. Remember, that these types of baby ailments are very common at this time of year and so there isn’t anything to worry about if your little one experiences these, as they typically don’t cause baby any discomfort.”

Don’t worry if little ailments start to feel like big problems

Parenting expert Rachel FitzD says, “It is completely understandable that when your little one is poorly, or has a minor ailment, you feel stressed. You may feel solely responsible for your baby’s every cough, sniffle, tear, and cry, but remember, that minor baby ailments are extremely common, very easily treated and usually nothing to worry about. If you are struggling, speak to friends, family or support groups. Or, speak to your health visitor or GP who will be able to provide you with some more personal advice.”

Learn the subtle differences between the ailments

“To make things more confusing, symptoms for some minor baby ailments can look very similar and so it is worth reading up on any key differences,” explains Dr Stephanie Ooi. “Sticky eyes and neonatal conjunctivitis have similar symptoms; however, sticky eyes presents itself with a watery eye and glue-like discharge, whereas neonatal conjunctivitis presents itself as yellow discharge, puffy or tender eyelids and weeping eyes. Ailments like dry scalp and cradle cap are also often confused. Dry scalp is dry and flaky skin that may fall off your baby’s scalp, whereas cradle cap is crusty, oily scales that protrude from the baby’s scalp, and shouldn’t be picked. If you’re ever confused, speak to your health visitor or GP.”

Relax and take time for yourself… it’s Christmas!  

“As difficult as it may seem, try to make some time for yourself, it’s Christmas after all!” Advises parenting expert Rachel FitzD. “Caring for a little one with a minor ailment, can be stressful, especially at the time of year when you might have the added pressure of navigating extended family. However, it’s also important to try and enjoy this time of year. Remember, it doesn’t matter if the potatoes burn because you need to focus on you and your little one, and not the in-laws. You’re doing a great job, so take it easy!”

To help with these winter ailments, Dentinox has also released two new products; the Dentinox Baby Scalp Oil which is available in Boots and on Amazon, and the Dentinox Eye Wipes, which is available to purchase on Amazon or from your local Morrison’s or Independent Pharmacy.

Dentinox Baby Scalp Oil: The new Dentinox Baby Scalp Oil can be used to help moisturise and nourish dry skin on a baby’s scalp. Did you know that a baby’s scalp produces dry, flaky skin that may flake off, but it is not itchy, oily or greasy? Whereas cradle cap produces crusty, oily scales that protrude from the baby’s scalp and should not be picked?

Dentinox Baby Scalp Oil includes a blend of nourishing botanical oils. It also contains Vitamin E, which conditions and protects the skin and chamomile, which is both calming and soothing. Dentinox’ Baby Scalp Oil moisturises and nourishes babies’ delicate skin on their scalp and has been dermatologically tested. It absorbs quickly and the nourishing plant oils help soften dry skin on the scalp. This product is available in Boots (RRP £5.49). Dentinox Baby Scalp Oil can be used from three months old.      

Dentinox Eye Wipes: Sticky eyes are characterised by a watery eye and glue-like discharge. This is common in new-borns and young children because their tear ducts are not yet fully developed. The Dentinox Eye Wipes, unique to the baby aisle, are specially made to gently cleanse baby’s eyelids and lashes and remove sticky residue, secretions and crusted matter from around the eyes. Each wipe is individually wrapped, so it is safe and sterile. The wipes are fragrance-free and contain chamomile extract, which has calming properties. They are also hypoallergenic and pH balanced – perfect for your little one’s eyes when you are out and about. This product is available from Amazon and independent pharmacies. (RRP £4.99) Dentinox Eye Wipes can be used from birth and are enriched with chamomile extract.

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