Diaper Rash Treatment And Prevention

Treatment for diaper rash requires several steps necessary in treatment and prevention.

Most babies eventually develop diaper rash. For some it is an ongoing problem. According to the website publication "Doctor Greene's HouseCalls", written by Alan Greene, M.D., F.A.A.P. and published by Dr. Greene's HouseCalls, there are many types of diaper rash. Determining what type of diaper rash a baby has can greatly help in treating the existing rash and preventing further outbreaks. Various types of diaper rash and their causes are mentioned by Dr. Greene, and they are as follows.

An irritant rash is caused mainly by products such as disposable wipes, laundry detergents, scented lotions, irritating soaps, and creams. A dirty diaper against the skin will also cause this type of diaper rash. The areas of the skin in which the irritant has come in contact with are the areas affected.

Allergic rashes look very much like poison oak. This type of diaper rash can compound the problem of an irritant rash. An allergic rash effects areas surrounding the creases and folds of the skin much like an irritant rash.



A friction rash is said to occur most frequently. This type of diaper rash occurs in areas where the diaper rubs against the skin. Loosening the diaper and using diaper cream will often clear up the problem. Exposing the irritated area to the air and changing diapers more often is also suggested.

Seborrhea can be identified by an oozing, scaly, yellowish-pink rash. This type of rash usually occurs in the creases of the skin. According to "Taking Care of Your Child", published by Addison-Wesley in 1990, this form of diaper rash should be treated by a physician.

Intertrigo is a common but severe form of diaper rash. It is brought on by moisture and warmth in the creases of the skin. Diaper rash of this type causes the skin to appear very thin. "Taking Care of Your Child" advises taking the baby to a physician for examination and treatment.

Diaper rash may become infected by the yeast bacteria known as "Candida", according to "Taking Care of Your Child". If diaper rash is irritated and infected by yeast, the skin will have little red dots. This infection can spread beyond the diaper area. If it is not treated, large blisters filled with liquid can form. The same book says the baby should be seen by a physician.

While at the physician's office, "Taking Care of Your Child" tells what steps the physician may take in examining and treating diaper rash. If the diaper rash is severe and the origin is unknown, the physician may take a sample of the affected skin and examine it using a microscope. When a bacterial infection is present, the physician will prescribe an antibiotic. Yeast infections are treated with topical cream or oral medication. When diaper rash is very bad, or when the rash is seborrhea, steroid cream might be prescribed.

The book entitled "The PDR Guide Encyclopedia of Medical Care", published by Three Rivers Press in 1997, gives suggestions to prevent further outbreaks of diaper rash. It says that diaper rash can occur with disposable or cloth diapers. If you are using cloth diapers, fabric softener, powder, or lotion on your baby, try to determine if these products may be the cause. Cloth diapers that have not been thoroughly rinsed after washing can be a source of diaper rash. It is also advised that you change the baby often to prevent irritation from bowel movements and wetness. Keeping the diaper area dry is very important in preventing diaper rash. Exposing the skin to the air as much as possible can help greatly. The use of products containing zinc oxide can help clear up a rash before it becomes severe.

Even with the best care your baby may develop diaper rash. However, treating the rash when it first appears can greatly reduce the risk of infection. There are numerous products on the market to treat and prevent diaper rash. Talk to your family physician and find out which products are recommended for your baby.

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