How Families Can Have A Safe Holi

Are you all set to celebrate Holi with family and friends? This colourful festival brings with it loads of fun and excitement. But, as you dive into the festivities, make sure you play it safe.

By Monali Bordoloi

How Families Can Have A Safe Holi

Nisha Thukral never played Holi during her growing up years. So, last year, when her college friends decided to arrange a Holi bash, she eagerly joined in. She played Holi for hours with water guns and colours. When Nisha returned home, she was shocked to see red patches all over her skin, which had started to itch as well. Her mother immediately gave her a homemade mix of 'multani mitti' and sandalwood powder to apply on the irritated skin. Thankfully, it worked for Nisha!

Nisha is not the only one to experience skin allergies post Holi celebrations. The seemingly harmless colours can sometimes lead to unnecessary skin and other health problems. If you want to enjoy Holi to the fullest, make sure you and your children take necessary precautions. If you or your child has a history of asthma or allergies, you need to be extra careful while enjoying this colourful festival.

Suffering from asthma or allergies? You can play Holi too!

The different hues of gulaal or Holi colours may look alluring but they can pose a threat to those suffering from asthma. This is because the colours used in Holi have many chemical compounds, which can trigger asthma attacks. Hence, it is advisable for asthma patients to take proper precautions while playing Holi.

Dr Shuba Dharmana, dermatologist, LeJeune Medspa, Bangalore says, “If you are sensitive to dust and colours, play with organic natural colours. Also, avoid playing Holi with dry colours. Instead, use moderate amount of good quality colours mixed in water. And if you are allergic to springtime pollens, doctors might suggest taking hay fever medications. Those of you who use nasal sprays, inhalers and antihistamine tablets like cetirizine, should keep these handy during the festival.”

Dr Shuba adds, “If you develop skin breakouts and rashes on contact with colours, you can take an anti-allergic tablet. Always keep a calamine lotion with you to soothe irritated skin.”

If your child has dust allergies, you should be extra careful and take all the necessary precautions to prevent too much colour from getting on to the skin, scalp, nails, hair and eyes. Also, if your child is prone to asthma attacks, make sure that he does not get colours on his face. Try to play Holi along with your children. This way you can keep an eye on them and make sure that they are playing a safe Holi. This is also a great way to bond with your children, and enjoy some fun-filled family time together!

Precautions to take during Holi

Are you planning to go for bleaching, waxing and a gold facial to look radiant this Holi? Hold on to your plans, as Dr Shuba advices to avoid all treatments and therapies like laser, facials, or chemical peel, a week before Holi. She says, “These procedures make the skin a lot more sensitive to the sun as well as to the colours. It will be better if you do not use saunas, or exfoliate up to two days prior to Holi. Waxing, bleaching and threading are also not recommended for three to four days prior to Holi.

For skin:

  1. Apply almond oil over the body and coconut oil over the scalp and hair to protect it from the harsh effects of colours and to prevent dryness.
  2. Rub almond oil generously over elbows and knees as these areas can accumulate more colours and chemicals.
  3. Moisturise lips with lip balm.
  4. Use a generous amount of sunscreen, with SPF 30 or above, all over the exposed body parts. Use waterproof sunscreen if you are playing with wet colours. This will ensure you don’t get tanned when you play in the hot sun.

For nails:

  1. Trim and paint your nails one day before Holi to prevent the colours from staining your nails.
  2. Apply cuticle cream to protect your nails.

For eyes:

If accidentally the colours get into your eyes, immediately wash the eye thoroughly with clean water. You can also prevent the same by wearing sunglasses or water goggles while playing Holi.

If there is any eye irritation, put your face in a bowl of water and try to rotate the eyeballs. This process will help remove the remaining colours. If redness or irritation persists, please see an ophthalmologist.

Celebrating with children

Children love playing with colours during Holi. However, we must ensure that necessary precautions are taken so that colours do not cause any harm to their sensitive skin.

Read the article below to know how you can make Holi safe for your children.

Home remedies for the skin post Holi:

To rejuvenate the skin after playing Holi, try these home remedies:

  1. Make a paste of besan with milk. Apply it on your face.
  2. Ubtans made from multani mitti and sandalwood powder are very good to soothe irritated skin. It will help in removing colours from the pores.
  3. Sea salt, glycerin and few drops of essential oil can be used as a scrub to remove the chemical colours from your skin.
  4. Exfoliate naturally with lemon peel before washing it off with a body soap.

If you are looking for special Holi getaways and recipes, browse through our ClipBook to know more.

With inputs from Dr Shuba Dharmana, dermatologist and medical director, LeJeune Medspa, Bangalore.

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