Diaper Rash


Diaper rash is common in babies who are on diapers for a long period of day. Read its symptoms, causes, and treatment and ways to prevent diaper rash.

Last Updated: 23 October 2020

Diaper Rash
Diaper Rash

Diaper rash appears as reddish blotches on baby’s bottoms, mostly around the area where diaper touches the skin. In rare cases, the rash may also spread to other areas.

What causes diaper rash?

Diaper rash is not a disease and is not a serious concern unless left unattended for long. The common causes of diaper rash are:

1.       Remaining in dirty diapers for long hours

When babies remain in soiled diapers for long hours, urine and stools can irritate the skin. Frequent passing of watery motion when babies contract diarrhea can be another cause of diaper rash.

2.       Tightly fitting diapers

When diapers are worn too tightly, it can restrict the flow of air because of which prolonged moisture inside the diaper area can inflame the skin.

3.       Chemical allergens

Some babies can be allergic to the laundry detergents in which cloth diapers, change sheets and other baby clothes are soaked or washed. Some diapers and baby wipes can cause allergic reactions.

4.       Infection

Moist areas attract fungal infections like Candida which can cause red rashes like a diaper rash. A tight diaper which does not allow the entry of air can encourage fungal growth.

5.       New baby foods or mother’s food while breastfeeding

New foods that are introduced to baby may change the consistency or content of baby’s stool which can cause skin inflammation. New foods taken by the mother while breastfeeding may also cause the same.

How does diaper rash look like?

The common symptoms of diaper rash are:

·         Red rashes on the buttocks, thighs and surrounding areas

·         Baby feels uncomfortable or fussy when the rash area is touched or wiped

·         If infected, the color of the rash appears bright red and swollen, accompanied by fever

How is diaper rash treated?

Home remedies is most often enough to treat diaper rash. Immediate attention to make the condition is better is important because prolonged diaper rash can be irritating and bothersome to both baby and parents.

·         Leave the bottoms open and dry as frequently as possible, at least until the rash subsides.

·         If you find the diaper or the baby wipes to be allergic, change the brand and try a new one.

·         If you find a new food which your baby or you bad could be the reason, avoid the food for a while before checking your baby’s skin reaction again.

·         You can use over the counter diaper rash cream for superficial application. Before the first time use, consult with your pediatrician about the brand and composition of the diaper rash cream.

·         Take care not to wipe the rash area. It can worsen skin irritation. Instead, gently pat with a dry cloth without pressing too hard.

·         Avoid using baby powder or lotions on the rash without your doctor’s consultation.

When to see a doctor?

In most cases, diaper rash does not require a doctor’s consultation. However, under the following circumstances, it is advisable to see a doctor without delay.

·         If the rash does not get better after home remedies

·         If the rash has spread to a larger area

·         If baby seems extremely annoyed when changing diapers

·         If the rash is accompanied by fever

·         If there is a visible infection

·         If there is oozing of pus or blood from the rash

What are the diaper care measures to prevent diaper rash?

·         Change diapers immediately after baby passes stools or after urine reaches the mark line on the diaper.

·         Do not fit diapers too tightly. There must be at least one finger gap between the diaper and baby’s skin.

·         With age, babies outgrow smaller sizes of diapers. Check regularly for the right size of diaper your growing baby may need.

·         Avoid covering the diaper area with plastic wraps or non-porous clothes. It can prevent exchange of air, causing heat to be trapped within.


·         Make sure that the bottoms are pat dry enough before wearing a new diaper. Wet skin covered by a diaper can lead to diaper rash. 


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