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Sleep Matters by Deb Herdman


Your baby’s skin could be the gateway to allergies

Kids with full-blown allergies usually have need 3 gene mutations but poor skin integrity has been found to be an open gateway for developing an allergy.

I remember my first year as a new mum. It’s such a huge learning curve. I thought nappy rash would be a common thing especially since cloth nappies and plastic over pants were the norm. I remember being particularly pleased that my baby was free nappy rash, but that all changed when teething took on a life of it’s own around nine months.

A sore red bottom resulted in shrill cries at nappy change time. I thought pain was associated with sore skin, only to discover months later that the baby wipes contained alcohol. It had a real sting when applied to irritated and reddened skin. That was back in the 80’s and disposable wipes were the newest best thing out but limited in choices and research!

Years later and more babies I realized that soap wasn’t the best option for baby skin because it removed natures oily layers that were the skins protector.

Pharmacist and leading colic expert from Wilby’s Wind and Colic mix, Gai Williams has spoken with hundreds of mums over her career and been asked many times how should nappy rash be treated.

Gai recommends Qiara probiotics as a great immunity booster. To look after baby’s skin, soap free wipes and washes help prevent nappy rash and skin breakdown because they are ph balnced to prevent skin becoming dry.

Teething can be particularly difficult when urine becomes more acidic causing further skin trauma. Gai suggests products with oatmeal can be a gentle alternative.

For nappy rash breakout Pine Tarsol baths are soothing if somewhat odorous but a popular old time favourite for reducing inflammation.
Barrier creams containing zinc keep the skin protected from urine and replace oils that may have been removed from soap containing wipes.

I know Bepanthen and Sudocream were my favourites…except for when my baby learnt to self serve and covered himself from head to toe. It didn’t seem to matter how tight the lid was on, he managed to get into it. A mess at the time but fortunately I can laugh about it now!

In addition to protecting the skin from pathogens the immune system needs adequate sleep. This is when the body repairs cells and removes toxins from brain. It also releases hormones that contribute to eating when you feel hungry and then that feeling of fullness afterwards.

This means your diet is likely to be much healthier as you tend to make better and healthier food choices.

I know when my son wasn’t sleeping I felt so much hungrier. Combined with juggling night shift, my brain was hugely sleep deprived and battling physical exhaustion I was grabbing quick snacks to keep me going.

Thankfully Nigh’ Nigh’ Sleepy Head sorted my sons sleep issues which helped mine. It was even better when I quit night shift! Now as a sleep expert I would to those working nights that they keep it as a short term work option and if that isn’t possible, to have regular breaks onto days shifts.

Sleep is vital to physical, emotional and mental health.  Not getting enough sleep contributes to a poorer quality of life and can cause serious and life changing health issues. Don’t underestimate the value and importance of good sleep.

Picture of About the Author

About the Author

Deb Herdman is a certified sleep practitioner specializing in infant, child, teen, and adult insomnia and sleep rhythm disorders.


The 3 R's to Sleep Success

Follow these 3 Simple Steps to have your baby start sleeping better

The 3 R's to Sleep Success

Follow these 3 Simple Steps to have your baby or toddler sleeping better in less than a week.
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