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Diaper dermatitis – how to recognize and treat it?

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Diaper dermatitis – how to recognize and treat it?

The skin of an infant is very delicate. That is why various sensitivities, flare-ups and allergies often occur. How to recognize diaper rash and what to do when it occurs?

When a baby is born, parents do everything they can to ensure its proper development. Unfortunately they are not able to protect the baby from a number of ailments typical for infants. One example is diaper rash. While wearing so called “pampers”, i.e. disposable diapers, is very comfortable, it can often harm the delicate skin of our offspring. So how to recognize this ailment and how to treat it?

Diaper rash – its causes

Diaper rash affects children who, as the name suggests, still use diapers. However, the most susceptible are babies from the age of 7 months to about a year, but it happens that during the first 2 years of life the inflammation appears several times. It always develops on the skin which is in direct contact with a diaper. And the reasons may be different. One of them is changing diapers too rarely. In advertisements we can hear about great absorbency of some products, but we should remember that they should be changed often anyway. If the skin is in contact with a fecalith or urine for too long, it becomes irritated and, what’s more, it leads to the development of numerous bacteria which cause infections

Let’s remember that a diaper (no matter whether it’s a reusable one or a tetra, which used to be popular in the past) rubs the skin of our baby. So it’s crucial to use delicate cotton balls when changing the diaper, and not, for example, rough paper towels. In addition, it is worth giving the skin a rest sometimes, especially when it is warm. You can lay the baby on a blanket, so as not to dirty the floor, and let the skin breathe. In this way, we alleviate irritation

The reason for diaper rash may be improper diapers, or rather, those which are produced using numerous chemical substances. It is also worth giving up wet wipes and strong washing substances. Pediatricians emphasize that especially in the first months of life we should use as few artificial preparations as possible, which may cause allergies and irritations

Irritated skin in the area in contact with the diaper can also be a consequence of: diarrhea, antibiotics, heat (the skin sweats more), improper hygiene, and more specifically – too infrequent washing of the infant’s bottom and bacterial infections. The problem may also arise when expanding the diet, when new products may cause changes in the pH and consistency of stools

What to do when diaper rash occurs?

When diaper dermatitis occurs, the baby is usually restless and crying. No wonder – the reddened skin hurts. The bottom is red and hot, sometimes there is also swelling, blisters, or small pimples. It is then necessary to use ointment with zinc, which has an antibacterial and drying effect. In its composition there is usually also soothing and moisturizing pentanol and allantoin. It is also worth ventilating the skin as often as possible, often change diapers (each time applying a thick layer of ointment). If you use cosmetics for baby care, you should choose those that are hypoallergenic and have a natural composition. Usually redness passes after 2-3 days, but if the problem persists, it is necessary to visit a doctor, who will take the appropriate treatment. If we suspect bacterial superinfection (a honey crust appears on the skin, blisters), then it is worth going to a specialist right away, it may be necessary to use an antibiotic.

Read also 4 things to pay attention to when choosing baby wet wipes

Main photo: Prostock-studio/

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