A young child’s delicate skin makes them more prone to dry skin than an adult.
The environment robs skin of its natural moisturizers; cold temperatures outside and indoor heating both can make skin dry out quickly. In warm weather, the sun, indoor air conditioning, salt water and pool water can also dry out the skin.
You shouldn’t be alarmed about your toddler’s dry skin unless there are signs that something else is going on. Skin conditions such as eczema can start off as dry skin and then will become blotchy with particular itchy areas. Additionally, there are some rare conditions in which dry skin is the number one symptom, but again, there are additional symptoms that indicate it is more serious than just dry skin.
The best thing you can do for your toddler’s dry skin is to moisturize, moisturize, moisturize…Try different products until you find what works best for your child’s skin, Generally, a thicker moisturizer will work better for a toddler.
You should also try to cut back on playtime in the bathtub. Ten minutes is usually a good amount of time. Make sure to use warm water, not hot, and make sure all soap and other products are washed completely from the skin. Speaking of products, bubbles should not be used at each bath when a toddler has extremely dry skin. You can save them for a special occasion.
Keeping your child well hydrated as water replaces moisture that has evaporated from the skin. Moisturizer serves a purpose here as well. It seals the skin and allows the moisture that your body produces, to stay in the skin instead of evaporating.
Using a cool mist humidifier may also be a good idea as it will add moisture to the air in your child’s room.
Lastly, protect your child’s skin from the elements. Use sunscreen and proper clothing in the summer and make sure to add mittens for the winter months.