This is the essential skincare for boys and girls

The skin is the largest organ in the body and has very important functions that help maintain good health: it prevents germs from entering the body, protects us from cold and heat and provides an immune defense. When to start skincare? The answer is: From birth.

Skincare should start from newborns and continue throughout life”, says Dr. Rossana Janina Llergo Valdez, president of the Mexican Foundation for Dermatology.

To prevent it from being vulnerable to injuries, infections and irritations, the expert shares these three recommendations that we should try on the skin of our girls and boys:

1. The first skincare: Protect it from the sun

Excessive exposure to UV sun rays favors processes of inflammation of the skin, that is, it damages it. And the damage received in childhood affects the skin throughout life. In fact, it is known that by the age of 18, 80% of skin damage is already done.

“From the age of 2 it is advisable to use sunscreen. Although this could be applied from the age of six months, it is not convenient to expose the little ones to such a significant amount of sunlight, such as in the beach because these conditions will easily attack their skin”, emphasizes Dr. Llergo Valdez.

In babies, the production of melanin, a pigment that helps protect us from the sun, is much slower, so it is necessary to take care of their skin from the sun’s ultraviolet radiation.

The skin protector must be of dermatological degree (preferably sunscreens, which have titanium dioxide and zinc oxide in their composition), have a minimum SPF (sun protection factor) of 30, although the ideal is 50, and be resistant to water.

Whether the boys or girls are indoors or outdoors, it must be applied every four hours. If they are in a place that receives significant solar radiation, it must be reapplied every two hours.

Complementing sun protection with clothing (preferably cotton) is very important. It is suggested that they wear long sleeves, a cap or hat, and glasses. For the legs, denim is very useful.

There are clothes with FPS, if you have the possibility to purchase them, this is an extra help.

“By establishing habits of sun protection from childhood, your skin will be healthy and you will have less chance of developing skin cancer in adulthood. We must not forget the fact that the skin has a memory”, says the expert.

2. Skincare at bath time

Skin hygiene is essential. Young and older children should take brief baths, with lukewarm water and neutral soap or syndet dermocleaners, with moisturizing qualities, which are discreetly acidic and respect the lipid layer of the skin so as not to attack it due to frequent use.

The dermatologist Llergo Valdez points out that loofahs or sponges should be avoided, since these objects are aggressive with the skin.

It is recommended to give a gentle massage, only with your hands and soap, without generating friction. In the case of little ones who wear a diaper, it is recommended to clean this area only with soap and water and avoid perfumed wipes, as they could cause irritation.

3. Keep it moisturized

After bathing, pay close attention to drying. It is recommended to do it very well in the area of ​​the folds to prevent moisture from contributing to the reproduction of bacteria and germs.

Right at the end of the bath and drying, you have to apply a moisturizing cream; at this moment the skin will take full advantage of its benefits. The emollient cream should be applied even to newborns.

Pay attention to any alteration

During the first year of life, it is very common that young kids suffer from skin problems. The weather, the environment, the lack of hydration, irritants, genetics, among others, make them prone to inflammatory conditions such as atopic dermatitis, which is characterized by redness, rashes and itching.

“If our children present changes or spots on their skin, we must take them to the specialist and not self-medicate them. When home recommendations are followed, the ointments and medications used can cause irreversible damage”, warns Dr. Llergo Valdez.

To keep our children’s skin healthy, it is advisable to take them for a check-up once a year with a pediatric dermatologist, who will also review their family history to provide preventive care.

The three most common skin conditions in childhood are atopic dermatitis, viral infections such as molluscum contagiosum, and warts.

“It is very important to teach our sons and daughters these good habits and help them understand the need to take care of their skin throughout their life”, explains the current president of the Mexican Foundation for Dermatology.

If there are newborns, infants and young children at home, do not forget to follow the three basic cares mentioned above: short baths, moisturizing the skin and protecting it from the sun.

In adolescence, skincare will change a bit, but based on these, the age in which hormones begin to do their thing will surely not be difficult to cope with, at least in terms of skin.

Translated by: Ligia M. Oliver Manrique de Lara

Spanish version

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