We all know how delightfully soft a baby’s skin can be. However, that softness comes at a cost. Baby skin is actually incredibly sensitive and is commonly affected by a range of skin ailments.
To help you out, we’re going to have a look at five common baby skin problems and how to treat them.
- Baby acne
Babies can get acne just like everyone else. Baby acne (or neonatal acne) is caused by maternal infant hormones. It’s a common condition and typically develops around a month or so after birth. Luckily, most cases of baby acne will disappear after a while. However, if you find that the condition isn’t improving after a few months, you may need to see your paediatrician so that they can prescribe you a medicated cream.
To prevent baby acne, you should try to keep your baby’s face clean at all times. Mild soap with warm water should do the trick. When bathing your baby, it’s also important not to keep them in the water for too long. Longer bathing times tend to dry out the skin and cause further irritation.
When dealing with baby acne, it’s important that you don’t use cleaning products that may irritate the skin further. This includes lotions that clog the pores, non-organic baby products and rough exfoliators.
It should be noted that baby acne is different from infantile acne. Infantile acne is said to be more severe than baby acne and tends to leave deep scars on the skin. Please see your GP if you believe your baby has a case of infantile acne.
- Cradle cap
Cradle cap (or seborrheic dermatitis) is a condition that causes thick yellowish scaling to appear on the baby’s scalp. It is often caused by an abnormal production of sebum or by a fungal infection. To treat this, you can use a medicated shampoo and gently massage it into the baby’s scalp. You can also use oils to help to loosen the scales and make them easier to remove.
Be careful not to use body products that may contain harmful ingredients. Such products may further irritate the skin and make the condition worse. As much as possible, try to use organic baby products that are free of chemicals and preservatives.
If you notice the skin swelling or weeping, you should see your GP. This might be a sign that your baby’s skin has been infected, in which case, they might need antibiotics.
- Heat rash
A heat rash occurs when the baby’s sweat glands get blocked and the sweat becomes trapped underneath the skin. This usually results in red blisters that can become itchy and sometimes painful. Luckily, most cases of heat rash will go away on their own. If they don’t, there are a few things that you can do.
Try your best to keep your baby’s room as cool as possible with fans or via open windows. If you live in a more humid area, it might be a good idea to use an air conditioner. Air conditioners will be able to cool the entire room and not just a single area.
When it comes to dressing your baby, you should use light clothing as much as possible. Organic cotton newborn swaddles are ideal. Try to avoid wrapping the baby with thick blankets.
- Nappy rash
A nappy rash, or diaper dermatitis, is when a reddish rash appears on areas of the skin that are covered by nappies. There are multiple reasons why a nappy rash might occur. The rash could develop due to the skin making contact with urine or faeces. It might also be a result of excessive friction caused by the diaper’s material or excessive moisture within the diaper.
The treatment for this condition is quite simple. You just need to make sure that you change your baby’s diapers regularly. You should also make sure that the diaper area is clean and moisturised at all times.
Impetigo is an infection that can occur on both healthy and damaged skin. It can be caused by both staph and strep bacteria and typically takes the form of a yellowish, crusty lesion on the skin. Impetigo is quite common in warm and humid environments.
Since impetigo is contagious, it’s important that you treat this condition properly. Unlike other conditions on this list, it’s best to leave the treatment to medical professionals. Avoid over-the-counter products that may irritate the skin further.
If your baby has a considerable number of lesions, your GP may prescribe antibiotics to treat the condition. If the skin only has a few sores, the doctor may suggest an ointment that you can apply directly to the skin.
Hopefully, this helped you better understand the different types of skin conditions that your baby might face. By gaining a deeper insight into these common conditions, you will be better equipped to treat most skin problems that your baby may experience. If you have any further questions or concerns about these skin conditions, please consult a paediatrician.