Tips for Preventing and Treating Diaper Rash
Diaper rash is one of those things that almost every parent has to deal with at some point. It is so common that it occurs both in babies using disposable diapers and cloth nappies.
The good news, though, is that since it is so common, there are simple solutions for it. Here is a look at tips that will help you prevent and treat diaper rash in your little one.
What causes diaper rash?
Before you can treat it, you need to understand what the underlying cause of diaper rash is. Several things can cause diaper rash. Here are some of them:
- Prolonged exposure to pee or poop:Because babies have very sensitive skin, when they are exposed to pee or poop for long periods, it can result in diaper rash.
- Rubbing and chafing: A tight-fitting diaper or even clothes that rub against the baby’s skin can also lead to diaper rash.
- Allergic reactions: This is usually to the products that you are using such as wipes, diapers, detergents, lotions, fabric softeners, powders, oils, bleach, and more.
- Bacterial or fungal infection: The buttocks, thighs, and genitals are warm and moist, making them susceptible to bacterial and fungal infections.
- New foods: When weaning your baby, you introduce new foods that change the content and frequency of their stool. This increases the chances of developing diaper rash.
- Sensitive skin: Babies with conditions like eczema are more likely to develop diaper rash.
How can you tell it’s a diaper rash?
Diaper rash makes the skin appear red, irritated, and tender. Common in areas that are warm or moist, it may make the area develop small red or pink bumps. Additionally, your baby may seem fussier than usual, crying more during diaper changes or when you wash or touch their diaper area.
How to prevent diaper rash
The best solution for diaper rash is to keep the diaper area clean and dry. Here are some of the things you can do to help you achieve this:
1. Change your baby’s diaper often
Immediately you notice that your little one has a wet diaper, be sure to change it. Babysitters and carers should also do the same.
2. After each diaper change, rinse the diaper area with warm water
You can do this with a washcloth, cotton balls, or baby wipes. This will ensure that the diaper area is always clean.Do not use wipes that have fragrances or alcohol in them, and if you must use soap, go for ones designed for baby skin.
3. Pat your baby’s skin dry or let it air dry
Patting instead of scrubbing the area dry reduces the risk of irritation and infection. An even better practice is to let the area air dry. To speed up the drying process and to ensure that everything is completely dry, you can use a baby butt blow dryer.
4. Make sure you don’t put diapers on too tight
Diapers that are too tight cause moisture to accumulate in the diaper area, causing the perfect environment for diaper rash to develop. They can also lead to chafing around the waist and thighs.
5. Let your baby have some diaper-free time
Whenever possible, let your little one go diaperless for a while. To avoid accidents, lay them on a sheet or towel. You can even do this outside if it is warm enough.
6. Wash your hands after each diaper change
This will prevent the spread of bacteria and fungi to and from your baby’s body or other areas.
How often should you change your baby’s diaper?
Newborns pee about 20 times a day. This means they need to be changed once every two to three hours at least if they are wearing disposable diapers, and once every 90 minutes when using cloth diapers. Change poopy diapers as soon as possible. This is especially crucial with girls because prolonged contact with stool can lead to bladder infections.
When to seek medical attention
Although diaper rash looks painful and irritating, in most cases, it does not bother your baby that much. However, if the rash looks infected, call your pediatrician immediately. Here are some of the signs of an infected diaper rash:
- Blisters in the diaper area
- Puss or discharge from the affected area
- The rash refuses to go away despite treatment
- The rash seems to be getting worse despite treatment
- The area is extremely sensitive and painful, making your child difficult to console
Easy home remedies for diaper rash
You can use the following natural products found at home to relieve or prevent diaper rash:
1. Baking soda: add two tablespoons to a warm bath to soothe the baby’s skin and lessen the redness associated with diaper rash. Do not rub the area, just let your little one soak in the solution.
2. Raw apple cider vinegar: dilute one teaspoon of raw apple cider vinegar in half a cup of water. Apply a little on a washcloth and pat the diaper area with it. Once done, let it air dry. You can speed up the drying process using a baby butt blow dryer such as the UpPro baby dryer.
3. Plain yogurt: this is a natural skin moisturizer. Use it as you would diaper cream.
4. Using washcloths instead of wipes: baby washcloths with plain water will help prevent the effect of the chemical preservatives that are often found in wet wipe solutions.
5. Air drying: this is hands down the best way to dry your little one’s butt. To help make sure that everything is nice and dry before rediapering, use a baby butt dryer.
The trick to keeping diaper rash at bay is to always keep the diaper area dry and clean. With the tips outlined in this guide, this should finally be easy for you to achieve.