By Melissa Lahti, Dec. 14 2007
Common mostly during a babyís first fifteen months of life, especially during eight to ten months. If your baby is experiencing red, puffy, warm to the touch, irritated skin in the diaper region it is most likely a diaper rash.
Some causes include:
To prevent diaper rash you should change diapers often. Rinse the babyís bottom with water as much as possible. Pat your baby dry with a clean towel, never rub the skin. Make sure you are not using diapers or clothes that are too small. You want to have plenty of airflow into the diaper. The number one enemy to diaper rash is air. Let your baby run naked as much as possible. If your baby is often rashy use a thin layer of ointment or powder with every diaper change to seal out the wetness. Finally, make sure you wash your hands before and after every diaper change.
When youíre changing your babyís diaper and you notice their bottom has become red try not to use wipes on the rash as this can further irritate it. After washing the babyís bottom with water, no soap, let the bottom air-dry as long as possible. Then, use an over the counter medication to cover the rash. This will keep the urine and stool from further irritating the rash.
There are many different products to choose from. My personal favorite is Johnsonís baby powder with Aloe and Vitamin E medicated. It creates a barrier on the skin to seal out wetness and prevent further irritation. While using zinc oxide to clear up the rash. As a word of caution, most doctors do not recommend using baby powder. The talc in the powder can be inhaled by the baby and can lead to breathing problems. When using baby powder you must keep it away from the babyís face. Especially with younger babies. The best way to apply it is to put the powder on your hand and then spread it onto the babyís bottom. If you decide to use a cream be sure and only use the products made strictly for babies. Donít forget you only need a thin layer on the skin.
If you have followed all the steps and the rash just wonít go away or appears to be getting worse after about a week. Call your doctor. If your baby has a fever or blisters that are weeping pus like discharge or the rash extends beyond the diaper region. Your baby may have an infection that will require prescription treatment to cure.
All in all, be patient and remember no wipes, plenty of air and frequent diaper changes. The two of you will be just fine and before you know it your baby will be back to normal.