(Family Features) As a new parent, it’s easy to find yourself overwhelmed by conflicting information about the safest ways to care for the little one who completely relies on you. This is especially true when it comes to baby care products.
The confusion related to ingredients that may be harmful to babies’ sensitive skin is top of mind for many moms. But to make the right choices for your family, first you need to sort the myths from the facts.
Myth: Baby’s skin is naturally perfect and can be cleansed with water alone.
Fact: Protecting the integrity of a baby’s skin barrier is critical. Cleansing is essential as it not only removes dirt, but can also prevent infection and transmission of bacteria that are on the surface of baby skin. It is important to buy products that are designed for babies specifically and that are proven to be mild while meeting or exceeding third-party industry standards. The Association of Women's Health, Obstetric and Neonatal Nurses (AWHONN), provides evidence-based clinical practice guidelines and product selection criteria to leading hospitals to ensure that infant cleansers, lotions, and shampoos are safe, effective and appropriate for use on newborn skin. Not all infant cleansers currently on the market meet AWHONN’s criteria, so be sure to look out for products that do when you shop.
Myth: Tear-free products are not safe for baby’s eyes and may contain harmful numbing chemicals.
Fact: The assertion that numbing chemicals are added to tear-free products is false. Products developed by JOHNSON’S scientists have undergone extensive clinical evaluation and are proven to be as gentle to the eyes as pure water. They only include ingredients that are safe without the use of numbing agents. Remember, not all baby products that promise to be tear-free are the same. The team of scientists at JOHNSON’S, the #1 baby care brand, are leaders in developing ways to evaluate products for eye safety and mildness. They conduct a complete ingredient review and assessment using laboratory and clinical methods before a product is eligible for the signature NO MORE TEARS label.
Myth: Products that say “natural” on the label are safest for your baby.
Fact: The use of the word “natural” on labels can be misleading. Standards created by groups like the Natural Products Association apply to a wide range of personal care products. In fact, some “natural” baby products contain allergens and some natural products eliminate preservatives, which are needed to prevent mold growth and contamination and ensure the product remains safe throughout its shelf life.
TIPS FOR SHOPPING THE BABY AISLE:
- Do your research and buy from companies that you trust to provide safe and appropriate products for your baby. Learn more specifics about product ingredients here: http://cosmeticsinfo.org/.
- Understand what ingredients on the label mean and don’t shy away from complicated words just because you don’t understand them.
- Remember, some trendy and natural brands may not follow AWHONN guidelines for safety and mildness.
- Beware of brands that make false or unapproved claims and that are not evaluated for baby skin specifically.
- For more information to help you make decisions in caring for your family, visit www.youtube.com/baby.