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Newborn Care Topics..

You are here : home > Newborn Care > Diapering and Grooming your Baby > Causes of Diaper Rash

Causes of Diaper Rash

Babies commonly get diaper rash. Diaper rash is a concern for most parents. The skin of baby is irritated and the baby may cry continuously due to this. Want to know the causes of diaper rash? Read on.

Why does my baby get diaper rash?

Clad in a nappy, a baby's bottom is susceptible to nappy rash. The skin is exposed to a high level of moisture, little air, a host of chemical irritants and infectious organisms present in the urine and the faeces, and friction caused by the rubbing of the nappy.

The skin first gets irritated by the chronic moisture and is further weakened by the friction caused by the chafing of the nappy. Irritating substances and infectious organisms in the stools and urine facilitate the development of the rash. Aggressive and frequent cleaning of the nappy area using detergents, tight nappies, rubber bands, and the ammonia in the urine can aggravate the condition.

My baby has a recurring case of nappy rash

Some babies have a recurrent condition of diaper rash. This may be because they have an inborn susceptibility, allergic tendencies, high levels of ammonia in their urine, or a pH imbalance in their stool. It may also be the case that once the skin has become irritated, it becomes more susceptible to a second attack.

How to treat diaper or nappy rashes?

Diaper rashes, as we all know can make a baby cranky and disturbed. Here are shared some tips you can follow to keep the rashes at bay.
  • You must ensure your hands are clean before removing the diapers or nappies.

  • Check her nappies or diapers often and change them before they get too soiled or wet.

  • Using baby wet wipes to clean the poop is a good idea. After wiping, you must ensure the area is dry.

  • When you use wipes, look for the mild ones with no fragrance. You may also consider using soft cloth to keep her clean.

  • Before putting on a fresh diaper or nappy you need to make sure the area is clean completely.

  • If she already has developed some rashes, you may consider keeping the bottom area open so that she can feel the air and a little comfort. It may also help the rashes to heal.

  • Keep her free from diaper as much possible. This shall help healing her skin faster.

  • Removing all diapers immediately after bowel movement shall help reduce chances of diaper rashes.

How to use powders, ointments and creams?

These are some products suggested commonly to take care of diaper rashes.

  1. Use only the products which are prescribed by a paediatrician.

  2. Avoid using over-the-counter products for treating rashes of your baby.

  3. Before you apply the cream, power or ointment, you need to clean the area thoroughly.

  4. Products containing petroleum jelly or zinc oxide can be useful in this case.

  5. You should be careful while using powders. Make sure the powder does not irritate her nose. This might result in breathing troubles as well.

  6. Do not put powder directly on your baby. Put some powder on your hand and apply on the affected area.

  7. It is better to avoid steroid creams unless prescribed by your doctor. These creams can irritate your little one when used the wrong way.

When to see a paediatrician?

Here are some instances when you may prefer to call the doctor. Take a look:
  1. If you find the rashes staying there even after treating it for 2-3 days.

  2. In case you see your baby getting sluggish or feverish.

  3. If you find crusty areas filled with pus or bumps. These can be bacterial infection that might require antibiotics.

  4. You must call the doctor if you see yeast like infection.

  5. You need to notify the doctor in case of red pimples around the areas covered with nappy.

  6. In case you find red colour folds on her skin.
Your doctor may prescribe antifungal medicine to help clear up all the infection.

What you can do?

Generally, it is possible to treat diaper rash at home, but in case you want to visit the doctor, here are some preparations you need to keep in mind. Take a look:
  1. Prepare a list of the symptoms and signs of your child. Also, note the time since when she has the rashes.

  2. You must also offer details about her food habits and medical condition. Let the doctor know if you are offering any medicines recently for treating any illness.

  3. Also, let him know if she is on formula solution of breastmilk. Any changes that you have brought in her diet must also be notified to your doctor.

  4. Prepare a list of the skincare product that you use for her. Your doctor may also want to know the brand of the talcum powder, lotion, cream and soap that are used for her.
You need not worry too much about diaper rashes, as these are minor skin rashes that can be easily treated. However, whether your child suffers from diaper rashes or not make sure to keep her free from diapers for at least some part of the day. This shall help you avert such incidences like a rash. Preferably, you can use diapers only at night and use the cloth nappy during the day time to prevent the discomfort.

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Rashi.7 years ago
I knw its a very common problems which moms face.... to be frank few hours we can leave the kid without is when he/she has just pooped out...thn fr few hours there is no risk ;) else these articles really help..n hey there are so many products on potty training avaliable on a portal by the name babeezworld...they will surely help in minimizing this problem..what is ur suggestion?
Shobha.9 years ago
diaper rashes also occur if the baby is sweating. therefore, one must always apply some baby powder on the sides and then make the baby wear the diaper.
Manisha.9 years ago
i think if you wear the diaper little up on the stomach and you stick the plastic sticker to the upward position it will lessen the rash. because the main source of rash is that plastic edge which hurts baby. and of course applying some baby powder before wearing the diaper will also help.
Reyna.9 years ago
a good way to prevent rashes is by using products with zinc or by using dry clay poweder, which is absoulutely natural and non-toxic.
Arianna.9 years ago
hi,i'm in 7th grade and was wrighting a half a page on caring for infants for science class,my moms having twins by the way and a i just a had to say that i thought that this is a great site to find what you need, and that i'm very pleased with your progress. you never kwow but years later i could be on this site looking for some help.keep up the good work.=)
Gayatri.9 years ago
i think first of all a baby should be worn diapers only after completing three months. till then cloth nappies are good and safe for the should be kept clean and should be cleaned immediately after passing stools. it should not be left like that in order to avoid rashes.
Mike.9 years ago
this article offers a good explanation but little advice by way of a cure. i found readers comments more helpful in solving the problem. essentially i jut found out that my child has an acute allergy to ammonia which is a component of urine.
Jayshree.9 years ago
use creams with zinc oxide to prevent rash. after rash has subsided use vaseline petroleum jelly during all diaper changes.
Brook.9 years ago
im in the 9th grade looking for needs of a newborn baby for home ec and i thought this was a good website to find it thanx
Seema.9 years ago
i am the mother of 2 baby boys and i use cloth diapers, safety pins, and rubber pants. even when they develope a diaper rash, i continue to diaper them in rubber pants. just be sure to change their diapers frequently and check their diapers every hour or so to make sure they aren't wet or poopy. contrary to all beliefs, rubber pants do not make a diaper rash worse.
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