As a mom, it’s easy to get caught up in all the “must-have” baby products, especially when you receive every type of cream, lotion and medicine on the market at your baby shower. We shouldn’t forget, though, about the tried and true home remedies for baby. Here are some natural options for a few common baby ailments:
Cradle cap is extremely common in babies. It’s sort of a baby dandruff, characterized by redness and scales on the scalp and face. It will go away with time, but until it does, it can be a real nuisance. Don’t buy an expensive cream before trying a natural remedy for a fraction of the cost.
Wash your baby’s hair more often. When you wash it, add a small amount of olive oil. Lightly massage the oil into baby’s head, and use a soft-bristled brush to work the flakes away. Continue as needed.
My first child had recurring bouts of constipation as a baby, and our family doctor always advised against giving him any laxatives. Apparently, children’s digestive systems can grow dependent on them to function properly. Fiber is the key to keeping constipation away.
Prune juice is the best remedy for baby’s constipation. Water it down, so it isn’t too potent for your baby. I use a one-to-one ratio of juice to water. If your baby really doesn’t like the taste of prune juice and won’t drink it, add it to another fruit juice. Straight apple juice or grape juice should also help relieve constipation. Feed your baby foods high in fiber, such as beans, lentils, peaches, apricots, plums and spinach.
Try this homemade remedy: Mix baby oil with 1 or 2 drops chamomile oil and rub on your baby’s tummy to help with digestion and gas.
Babies will inevitably get a cold or two, yet we aren’t supposed to give them decongestants. None of us, including babies, can cure our colds, but we can try to ease their symptoms. Place a cool mist humidifier in your baby’s room while he sleeps. Or, sit in the bathroom with your baby for 10 to 15 minutes while a hot shower runs. Steam will help thin mucus and relieve congestion. Avoid giving your baby milk while he has a cold. Milk will only thicken the mucus and make congestion worse. Give baby plenty of other fluids, especially water.
Try this homemade remedy: Rub a mixture of lavender, camphor and olive oils on your baby’s chest to ease chest congestion.
Photo courtesy of Clare Bloomfield.