Everyone gets a rash at some point in their life and the difficult thing is to know when it is serious and if it is not and how to treat it at home. These are some of the more common rashes seen on babies and some ideas on the best ways to treat them. Always seek medical advice if you are in any doubt about the cause or type of rash that your baby has.
Baby rashes can be scary especially on your first child but they are generally harmless and will clear up on their own or with over the counter medication. This is what to look out for.
- Baby acne – This usually affects teenagers going through puberty but can also affect babies in their first few weeks. Hair follicles get blocked with sebum which is an oil and the spots appear as a result
- Erythema multiforme – A skin reaction caused by medication or possibly an infection such as herpes simplex, it starts on the hands and feet then spreads. There may be a fever but this is not dangerous and should be treatable with baby over the counter medicines. If it is still going on after a couple of weeks then seek medical advice.
- Eczema – Red, itchy, cracked skin that is particularly prone to occur in the folds of the skin; you can get creams to sooth the itching and help the dryness.
- Hives – This rash is also known as nettle rash and is a red, itchy, raised rash that is generally triggered by an allergic reaction. It will go down after a few days and is not at all contagious.
- Impetigo – This is a skin infection that is caused by bacteria and is very contagious. Blisters and a rash around mouth will develop and although they do not hurt they can be itchy and as the infection is easily spread treatment is recommended to clear the infection up quickly. Treatment is usually antibiotic cream, although tablets may be prescribed for a widespread rash.
- Keratosis pilaris – a harmless skin condition that looks like the skin is covered in goose pimples. Generally caused by excess keratin being produced by the skin that blocks the pores. It can be treated with gentle exfoliation and moisturizing
- Blisters – caused by rubbing on the skin, could be ill fitting shoes or fastenings on clothes. Blisters may also be the result of heat or chemical damage. They heal themselves but if they blister pops the wound should be kept clean to avoid infections.
- Milia – Little white cysts on the baby’s cheeks that are caused by blocked pores. This is a very common rash in newborn babies and will disappear after a few days.
- Meningitis – This is a serious illness as septicemia may be caused by it and so immediate medical help should be sought if meningitis is suspected. The tumbler test involves rolling a glass over the rash, if it does not disappear under the pressure of the glass the meningitis should be considered. Make sure that you know this and the other symptoms of meningitis.
- Nappy rash – This is a common problem for babies as their[r buttocks have regular contact with urine and feces. Usually a simple cream will clear it up, but if the skin is swollen or cracked then seek medical advice as it may be a fungal infection
- Prickly Heat – Thought to be common in babies as their sweat glands are not developed properly yet. It causes a mild prickly stinging rash and should not cause problems, but your doctor can advise if you are worried
- Slapped cheek syndrome – This is a common baby virus; it begins with flu symptoms and then becomes a blotchy facial rash that looks like slapped cheeks. It should clear up in a few days.
- Ringworm – An infection caused by a fungus; this looks like rings on the skin and will clear up with a fungicide
There are many possible causes for Baby rashes some can be scary especially on your first child but they are generally
harmless, most of them are not serious but it is important to be able to tell the difference; always seek medical advice if you have any doubt about the rash, it is always better to be safe than sorry.