Think Twice Before Applying These Traditional Health Advice to Your Baby
As soon as you deliver your baby, you get bombarded with advice from your friends or family members. Some of which might be helpful, but others are outdated and not convincing. In fact, some of the traditions date back since the Egyptian or Greek times. You yourself might have heard some of them like using Saboun Baladi or olive oil soap for your baby. The question is: are these traditions helpful in any way? Buckle up, and get ready for a trip in our time machine to know whether some ancient practices of beauty and health are effective or not.
Natural Olive oil
Olive oil, adopted since the Greek times, is a Lebanese key component used in a variety of products. You might have come across the advice of using it for your newborn baby’s skin as a moisturizer. However, a research conducted by the University of Manchester shows that excessive use of oil can potentially disrupt the skin barrier and causes the skin pores to open. Hence, it allows many organisms to penetrate. The newborn baby might eventually become allergic to these substances and might develop eczema
The study was conducted on neonates, so the effect on older babies is still not understood. Moreover, the long-term effect of olive oil is still controversial, so using it is discouraged especially for families who have a history of eczema. Always consult your physician before applying such products on your baby’s skin.
Wrapping the baby tightly in a blanket is an age-old practice inherited from the primitive stone age. You might feel hesitant about the idea, but this practice is, in fact, beneficial for many reasons: it keeps your baby warm and helps him/her sleep longer. In addition, when swaddled, your baby won’t be able to change his/her posture in a harmful way. Eventually, the baby’s physiological development will be improved.
The benefits of swaddling are still controversial, so we don’t recommend it unless it’s being done by a nurse and only when the baby is sleeping on his/her back. If the blanket is wrapped in a wrong way, the baby’s hip bone may abnormally develop.
Applying bat blood for hair removal
Adopted from the Roman Era, bat’s blood was used in hair removing products. It may seem weird but some Lebanese villages still use it today! Note that the procedure is very risky: it involves applying fresh bat’s blood to the newborn body and removing it two hours later by adding warm water and salt. This obviously raises alarming concerns about transmitting viruses and bacteria to the baby whose immune system is still weak.
You might know some people for whom this procedure has worked, but until now there is no science behind this practice and few research groups have studied it. Thus, be careful not to try any procedure which is not proven scientifically to stay safe.