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Study Finds Link Between Baby Wipes And Allergies

'It’s a major advance in our understanding of how a food allergy starts early in life.'

As any mum knows, you don’t go anywhere without the baby wipes. They’re a baby bag essential.

However now it seems our propensity to wipe everything away might actually be disrupting the skins natural protective barrier, according to a US study.

Researchers have described their findings as a “major advance in our allergy understanding” after discovering that allergies can develop in areas where soap has not been properly washed off and skin has been stripped of natural oils.

However they do note that the child must already carry the genetic mutations that affect the skin.

“This is a recipe for developing a food allergy,” said the study’s lead author, Joan Cook-Mills, a professor of allergy-immunology at Northwestern University. “It’s a major advance in our understanding of how a food allergy starts early in life.”

Researchers used baby mice with dermatitis and exposed them to potential allergens including peanuts. While the nuts alone had no effect, when combined with exposure to sodium lauryl sulphate, a common soap also found in wet wipes, resulted in a rashes, allergic reactions and in some cases anaphylaxis, reports

“Reduce baby’s skin exposure to the food allergens by washing your hands before handling the baby and limit use of infant wipes that leave soap on the skin,” added Professor Cook-Mills.

“Rinse soap off with water like we used to do years ago.”

Click here for more information on allergies in infants or speak with your health care provider. 

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