Written by Aparna Hari
Bathing is a fun time for both the babies and their parents. Bathing is necessary not only for the cleanliness aspect but also for blood circulation, oxygen supply, and relaxation of the body and mind. Epsom salts enhance the goodness of bathing by adding necessary minerals like magnesium and sulfate to the water. Thus, an occasional Epsom salt bath for babies is quite beneficial.
Unlike regular salt which contains sodium and chloride ions, Epsom salts contain magnesium and sulfate ions. Both these minerals, directly and indirectly, support our vital bodily functions. So what benefits can my baby get from an Epsom salt bath? Is Epsom salt safe for babies? What are the risks and benefits of Epsom salt baths for babies? Let’s dig deep into these queries here.
In This Article
Epsom salt is safe and beneficial for babies if prepared according to the correct proportions. It can provide your baby with nutrients like magnesium and sulfate essential for their overall growth and development. But overuse or improper use can reduce the benefits of Epsom salt for your baby. Babies who have open cuts or wounds, recent burns, certain heart or blood-related conditions, and magnesium or calcium disorders should also be kept away from Epsom salt baths.
Thus, you will always need to consult the doctor about Epsom salt baths and know what proportion will be suitable according to the age, health requirement, or deficiency of the baby. To ensure maximum safety standards you should buy pure Epsom salt for baths from a reputable brand recognized by top-quality monitoring institutes.
Epsom salt is basically a chemical compound namely magnesium sulfate (MgSO4). According to a report published by NIH, magnesium sulfate is important for the smooth function of physiological processes and can be used as a neuroprotective agent.
When you pour this water-soluble compound in water the magnesium and sulfate ions separate and mix in water. Applying the Epsom salt water thus theoretically enables the skin to absorb magnesium and sulfate. Though there are not enough clinical studies on the transdermal absorption related to Epsom salts, some anecdotal evidence indicates its benefits.
Using Epsom salt for bathing in a limited manner (twice a week) after taking a pediatrician’s advice can prove to be beneficial for your baby. The possible benefits of Epsom salt baths for babies are
According to a research study published in the International Journal of Cosmetic Science, Epsom salt can reduce irritation due to diaper rash, heat rash, eczema, and psoriasis. The magnesium present in Epsom salt is also known for its anti-inflammatory properties. Thus, it is also effective to soothe itching due to insect bites or sunburn. Especially on summer days, your baby will get relief from rashes and itchiness after an Epsom salt bath.
[Read : Sunburn In Babies]
According to a study published by NIH, the production of the sleep-inducing hormone, melatonin, is stimulated by magnesium. As we know Epsom salt contains magnesium, so bathing in it will definitely induce good sleep. So, if your baby is not sleeping sufficiently then you can try Epsom salt bath.
Bathing in lukewarm water is good for blood circulation. The magnesium content in Epsom salt enhances its effect as most of the enzymes responsible for blood circulation depend on magnesium.
It exfoliates the skin- Sincere use of Epsom salt can nourish the skin of your little one. The sulfate present in Epsom salt helps in removing dead cells, repairs damaged skin cells and also takes part in building new ones.
Babies do suffer a lot from digestive issues. A warm Epsom salt bath can help the digestive system to function smoothly. Bathing involves physical activities and improved metabolism which can also help food to digest quickly. Epsom salt bath is also effective against constipation as it works as an external laxative.
As soon as your baby starts crawling and walking their muscles and joints will go through a hectic pace. Their frequent tumbles and falls can lead to muscle fatigue. Epsom salt water baths will give relief to their leg muscles after a full day of endless exploration.
Now that you know the benefits of Epsom salt baths for babies, it is time to know how to safely introduce Epsom salt to your baby. Below are the steps you need to follow
[Read : Tips for Baby Bath]
Epsom salt is comparatively a neutral chemical compound, yet there are certain risk factors associated with it. Here are the potential risks of using Epsom salt for a baby’s bath.
You need to carefully hold your baby upright during an Epsom salt bath. And you should never leave your baby unattended during bath time. Also, notice if your baby is showing any side effects after the Epsom salt bath. If yes then inform the doctor immediately.
Epsom salt bath for babies is effective and beneficial if you know the right way to prepare the bath and bathe your baby. Consult a pediatrician before starting your baby with an Epsom salt bath to ensure that it is safe for your baby. They will also guide you on the frequency of bathing and how much salt you can safely use.
[Read : Dry Skin In Babies]
Yes, Epsom salt baths help babies to sleep soundly. The relaxing effect of magnesium present in Epsom salt improves sleep quality. This bath can especially be helpful when your baby is going through teething or phases of sleep regression.
Yes, Epsom salt baths are effective against fevers. The minerals of Epsom salt will keep your baby hydrated and release toxins from the body. Thus, it will prevent the fever from getting high. But you must use lukewarm water and not cold water for Epsom salt baths.
Her experience in impactful writing combined with her background in Home Sciences makes Aparna the perfect candidate for content writing in the pregnancy and parenting niche.Read more.
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