Diaper rash is a common problem that many parents face when taking care of their newborns, infants and toddlers. Although certainly not among the Three Common Pediatric Emergencies Requiring Immediate Medical Care, diaper rash is usually caused by prolonged skin contact with wet diapers and/or diapers that are too tight. Sometimes, soaps used to clean cloth diapers, a sensitivity to a disposable diaper or antibiotics given to the baby or a breast-feeding mother can cause this problem. The skin on the bottom typically appears red, scaly and blistered. A physician should be consulted if a diaper rash occurs in a newborn less than 6 weeks of age, ulcers, pimples or swelling occur, fever develops, the child has poor appetite or weight loss, the rash spreads elsewhere or the is no improvement with home therapy after one week.
Prevention and treatment centers around changing diapers often, cleaning the bottom thoroughly with warm water and a very mild soap (not baby wipes) and patting (not rubbing) dry. If possible, allow another few minutes for air to dry any residual moisture. Using Desitin, A&D ointment or Vaseline can help treat and prevent diaper rash. Avoid the use of plastic pants, as these retain moisture, and never use baby powder, due to the risk of powder inhalation.
North Idaho Direct Primary Care provides primary and urgent care medical services for the entire family, including newborns, infants and children. Contact us today at 208-772-5204 and re-discover how our personalized, cost-effective and convenient medical care can benefit your entire family.