When you’re a new parent, nothing is more worrying than a possible issue with your baby’s health. While rashes are common in babies, you want to know what causes them and what you need to do to treat them.
The good news is most rashes in infants and small children are very treatable. Even though a rash might be highly uncomfortable for your child, you can rest assured it most likely isn’t an emergency.
When rashes occur in infants and small children, Clifton Etienne, MD, Michael Cavanagh, MD, and Flora Brewington, MD, are prepared to diagnose and treat them. You can visit Westmed Family Healthcare in Westminster, Colorado, for all-ages urgent care services the very same day you notice the rash. Infant care is readily available to tend to your child’s health.
Learning about rashes in babies might help ease your mind the next time you see the signs. Here’s everything you need to know about rashes in babies and how to manage them.
Why do babies get rashes?
Babies’ skin is ultra-sensitive as it’s new and growing, so it’s more susceptible to infections and irritation than an adult’s skin. Additionally, babies’ immune systems are still developing, so they can’t fight rash-causing infections very effectively.
While many common rashes in infants come from bacterial or viral infections, others come from irritation due to specific triggers. Your child might develop a rash in response to:
- A full diaper
- Chemicals and detergents
You can get some idea of what’s causing your baby’s rash by examining its features. Is their skin bumpy or flat? Is there consistent redness across their skin or is it patchy? Our team at Westmed Family Healthcare can identify many infant rashes just by looking at them during an urgent care visit.
Common rash types in babies
The most common rash in infants and children under two is diaper rash, which involves irritation from long-term dampness from a full diaper. Most babies who wear diapers get it at some point. To avoid diaper rash, change your baby’s wet diaper as quickly as possible to limit skin dampness. If your child has yeast diaper rash, they’ll need an antifungal cream to get rid of the infection.
A few other common rashes in babies are:
- Cradle cap: flaky skin on your baby’s scalp
- Drool rash: irritation around your baby’s mouth from saliva
- Eczema: irritation, redness, and inflammation from a combination of genes and environment
- Hand, foot, and mouth disease: a contagious viral skin infection
- Thrush: a fungal yeast infection on your child’s tongue and lips
- Fifth disease: a “slapped cheek” rash that sometimes comes with fever
You might recognize some common infectious rashes that affect babies such as chickenpox or measles.
What to do for an infant rash
An urgent care visit can remove all uncertainty about what’s causing your child’s rash and which treatments can alleviate their discomfort. Rash treatments vary based on the type of rash, and your child might need medicated ointment or cream to get rid of an infection or irritation.
General recommendations for rashes in babies include:
- Keeping your baby’s skin clean and dry
- Giving your baby an oatmeal bath
- Avoiding harsh soaps and detergents for your baby’s skin and clothes
- Using soft, wet cloths instead of fragranced wipes
- Washing your hands before changing your baby’s diaper
- Changing your baby’s diaper often
Our team might also encourage you to keep track of your baby’s foods and behaviors leading up to rashes or rash flare-ups so you can identify specific triggers. By doing so, you can help your baby avoid future rashes.
If your baby has a rash, it’s a great time for an urgent care visit. Call Westmed Family Healthcare today for same- or next-day care or book an appointment online anytime.