Diaper rash in babies is a common skin problem which makes a baby’s skin sore, red, and scaly. These rashes develop on the skin of the area that is covered by a diaper, that’s why it is called ‘Diaper rash” (Irritant diaper dermatitis). This skin problem usually occurs in infants and babies below the age of 2 years. Studies show that the most common period of these rashes is between the age of 9 months to 12 months. Diaper rash is generally caused because of irritation of skin due to contact with urine, stool and detergent.
Causes of Diaper Rash:
Diaper rash is actually a type of contact dermatitis which is believed to be the result of a bacteria and yeast (fungal). Though the basic causes of diaper rash are still under active debate of experts but usually wet and dirty diaper is considered to be the major reason of these rashes. As some babies are more sensitive and get allergic easily, frequent chafing of the diaper against tender skin of a baby may result in bacterial or yeast infection. Wipes or detergent might be other causes of an irritation, infection or allergy.
Tips and Treatment of Diaper Rash:
Diaper rash is the common cause of baby’s discomfort. Best prevention of this discomfort is to keep your baby clean and dry. Change her diaper timely and also apply some topical cream before you put on another diaper. In addition to, use diaper free of fragrances and dyes because some babies are more sensitive and get allergic quickly. However, cloth diapers are the best option for your babies. Because wipes can also cause rashes, therefore, simple cleansing with water and soft cloth is good for your baby’s health. Still if your baby gets diaper rash, you can apply some natural home remedies before exploring conventional treatment.
1. Air Exposure for Diaper Rash:
In most of the cases, rashes clear up with simple care and changes in diaper. Air exposure i.e. not using diaper for some time, is the best treatment; because if there is no diaper, no rash.
2. Coconut Oil for Diaper Rash:
Coconut oil is one of the most natural products that can work wonders especially for diaper rash caused by yeast. Studies indicate that coconut oil is an effective anti-fungal, especially against ‘Candida albicans’ – a type of fungus. (2) Therefore, apply it on the affected area after washing your baby’s bottom.
3. Petroleum Jelly:
You can also cure diaper rashes by applying topical barriers to the diaper region like- Petroleum jelly or Vaseline or any other soft ointment. But use of powder is not good for the diaper region.
4. Aloe vera Gel:
If your baby’s diaper rashes accompany severe inflammation, then you should use aloe vera gel. You can either use fresh aloe vera gel or bottled version – both are natural and would provide relief to your baby.
5. Cornstarch for Diaper Rash:
Cornstarch (makai ka atta) is very good to treat rashes as it helps to reduce diaper friction. After removing the soiled diaper, wash the bottom of your baby with lukewarm water and dry the skin carefully with soft cloth. Then, lightly sprinkle the corn starch on the skin directly just like baby powder before using new diaper. Repeat it till the skin completely heals.
6. Vinegar for Diaper Rash:
Do you know, by adding a some raw apple cider vinegar to your baby’s bath water, you can get rid of diaper rashes quickly. Research proves that apple cider vinegar not only kill bacteria that could worsen the rash, but it will also helps to kill yeast that is prone to cause a rash. (1) Or dilute a tablespoon of apple cider vinegar in a cup of water and wash your baby’s bottom at the time of changing the diaper.
If you are using cloth diaper, it is better to use mild detergent for washing and run an extra rinse to remove traces of soap or detergent. You can rinse them in a vinegar solution; use half cup of vinegar in half bucket of water to rinse the diaper. It is very good to remove stains of soap as well as urine smell too.
7. Breast Milk for Diaper Rash:
Breast milk has many amazing bio-dynamic properties; it can be safe, effective and convenient remedy for soothing diaper rash. (1) Simply apply few drops of breast milk on the rash affected area at regular interval and let it air dry
8. Plain Yogurt for Rashes:
Plain yogurt is good to treat diaper rashes and inflammation. Simply, apply a thick layer of the plain yogurt on the rash-affected area and put on a diaper. It will cure rashes within two days completely. Use enough yogurt on room temperature to cover the rash completely. And at the time of diaper change, wipe off the remaining yogurt with a wet soft cotton cloth. You can reapply the yogurt till the rashes are completely disappeared.
9. Oatmeal Bath:
Oatmeal bath is one of the most popular tried and tested remedy for diaper rash in babies. It provides relief from the pain. Grind 1/3rd cup of oats to make fine powder; then mix this powder slowly into lukewarm bathwater of an infant tub. Now keep your baby sit in the bath by holding him for 10-15 minutes, then pat dry his skin gently (don’t rub). If the diaper rash is severe, then try this remedy twice a day for best results. Oatmeal is highly effective to keep skin soft and moisturized.
10. Baking Soda:
To treat diaper rashes, mix 2 tbsp of baking soda in lukewarm water and wash the rashes area with this solution at regular interval. Don’t wipe it, let it air dry. Or you can mix 2 table spoon of baking soda in bathwater of infant tub and let baby soak for 5-10 minutes in it. Then wipe with a soft cloth to dry; it will help to soothe skin by lessening the redness.
Diaper rashes are usually cured within 3-4 days by following above tips and home remedies, but if it doesn’t heal or get worsen day by day, consult your doctor immediately. In other words, you do not need to go to doctor in case of mild diaper rashes but in severe rashes you should consult your doctor immediately.