Baby and toddler medicine cabinet

Baby and toddler medicine cabinet

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  • Babies' delicate skin and growing bodies need special care. Find out all about the products you might need, and which are safe, for your baby or toddler. You can also get a printable list of these and other essential items to keep in your medicine cabinet for babies and toddlers.

  • Pain reliever and fever reducer

    Worried your baby or toddler might have a fever? A digital thermometer can help you find out.

    If your child does have a fever, children's acetaminophen or ibuprofen will bring relief. (If your baby is under 3 months old, check with your doctor before using any medications.)

    Other cautions: Ibuprofen isn't recommended for babies under 6 months. And make sure to use the correct dosage of any medications you give your child. Our handy chart can help you determine how much acetaminophen to use.

    Find out how to take your child's temperature.

    Learn the difference between acetaminophen and ibuprofen.

  • Insect bite relief

    To soothe your baby or toddler's itchy insect bites, keep topical calamine lotion or hydrocortisone cream on hand. Cotton balls are useful for applying liquids like calamine lotion to your child's skin without making a mess.

  • Splinter and tick removal

    Tweezers are a useful tool for getting a grip on hard-to-grab objects, like a tiny splinter or an icky tick. Make sure to clean the tweezers in between uses with rubbing alcohol. Those handy cotton balls work great for this.

    Find out what to do if a tick bites your baby or toddler.

    Get tips on removing splinters from your baby or toddler's skin.

  • Treatment for cuts and scrapes

    A ready supply of adhesive bandage strips is a must, especially once your little one is on the go. Keep a selection of assorted sizes and shapes in stock so you can handle anything from a small scrape to a larger cut. Spreading a little antibacterial ointment on a cut can also help reduce the risk of infection.

    Find out more about treating cuts and scrapes.

  • Nail care

    Even though your baby's nails are teeny-tiny, they can still be sharp enough to scratch you or your baby. They even grow fast enough that you may have to cut them more than once a week. Nail clippers made especially for baby nails and a small nail file will help you keep his nails in shape.

    Get more tips on trimming your baby's nails.

  • Sunscreen

    To keep your baby or toddler's delicate skin from burning in the sun, use a waterproof sunscreen designed for children. Choose one labeled "broad spectrum," which means it protects against both UVB and UVA rays. Use SPF 15 or higher before sun exposure and reapply it at least every two hours.

    Some experts recommend choosing a "physical" sunscreen -- one made with zinc oxide or titanium dioxide -- for babies and toddlers. Unlike ingredients in chemical sunscreens, which the skin absorbs, these ingredients merely sit on top of the skin, forming a barrier against the sun's rays.

    Get more information on keeping your baby safe in the sun.

    Getting sunscreen on your wriggling child can be difficult. Watch our videos on how to put sunscreen on a baby or toddler.

  • Insect repellent

    Keep pesky mosquitoes and ticks away from your child with child-safe insect repellent. Products containing DEET are not safe for babies under 2 months. On babies older than 2 months, follow these precautions.

    If you'd rather not use products containing DEET, look for a bug repellent made with citronella instead.

  • Relief for stuffy noses

    Until your baby or toddler is old enough to blow his nose, you'll need to help.

    A bulb syringe will help you suck out mucus, making it easier for your child to breathe, eat, and sleep. Use saline drops to moisten and loosen up the mucus first.

    Find out more on using a bulb syringe.

    Discover what might be causing your baby or toddler's stuffy or runny nose.

  • Hair and body care

    Children have delicate skin, so you'll need to take special care when bathing and shampooing your baby or toddler. Pick a shampoo and body wash formulated for babies. A soft washcloth is also great for gently washing your child's skin and scalp. Use only a small amount of body wash or shampoo to prevent drying out his skin.

    A soft-bristled baby brush can help remove any dry skin or flakes from your baby's scalp, especially if he's suffering from cradle cap.

    Get more information on bathing your baby, and get tips for keeping bathtime safe for your baby or toddler.

  • Dry skin soothers

    Since young skin is so delicate, it's even more susceptible to becoming dry than an adult's. Not all babies need moisturizer, but if yours does apply baby lotion or cream -- the thicker the better -- immediately after bath time. If your baby's skin is extra dry, try moisturizing twice a day.

    Find out more about treating your child's dry skin.

  • Diaper rash treatment

    Almost every baby and toddler will experience at least one diaper rash. To head these off and keep your child more comfortable, follow these guidelines:

    • Keep your child clean and dry by changing her diaper frequently.
    • At each diaper change, rinse her diaper area well and pat her skin dry.
    • Use diaper rash cream after every change to help protect her irritated skin from stool and urine.
    • Let your baby go diaper-free as much as possible while the rash is healing.

    Get more tips on battling diaper rash.

  • Gas and colic remedies

    Is your baby following the rule of threes? That is, crying for more than three hours in a row on three or more days a week for at least three weeks? If this sounds right – and your baby's under 5 months old – then chances are he's colicky.

    There are many strategies for soothing colic, but some moms swear by over-the-counter remedies such as gripe water or anti-gas drops. As with any medication, get your doctor's okay before use.

  • Care for tiny teeth and gums

    Even before your baby sports a first tooth, it's a good idea to get into the habit of wiping her gums with gauze or a soft wet washcloth during her bath. You don't need to use any toothpaste yet. Simply wrap the cloth or gauze around your index finger and rub it gently over the gums.

    Once your child's teeth start to appear (generally around 6 months), use a baby or toddler toothbrush with a small bristle head and larger grip suitable for your hand. Add a thin smear of fluoride toothpaste.

    Brush your child's teeth gently on both the outside and inside surfaces twice a day. Replace the toothbrush as soon as the bristles start to look worn or splayed out. Get more tips on brushing your baby or toddler's teeth.

  • Want more information?

    • Print our list of what to keep in your medicine cabinet for babies and toddlers.
    • Find out more about medications and treatments for babies and toddlers.

Dana Dubinsky is a health and science editor.

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Watch the video: Organized Kid Cabinet: Toddler Edition (August 2022).

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