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The ultimate guide to diagnosing your baby's diaper rash


April 04, 2016

Diaper rash is one of the most common skin disorders of early childhood. Below are the 5 most common diaper rashes, why they occur, and how you can treat them.

1. CONTACT RASH 


This rash appears flat and blotchy and typically occurs all over the bum. It occurs when the skin comes in contact with something irritable, usually a harsh chemical like bleach, soap or detergent, or exposure to a synthetic fabric like polyester or fleece.

Disposable Diaper Users:
  • Switch to cloth baby wipes or water-based baby wipes
  • Apply diaper cream at every diaper change
  • Switch to chlorine-free or cloth diapers
    Cloth Diaper Users:
    • Strip cloth diapers to remove any detergent residue
    • Switch to diapers with natural fiber interior linings
    • Add a fleece liner to diapers to wick moisture away from baby
    Suggested Products: Water Wipes, Chlorine-free diapersRash TherapyFleece Liners, Cloth Diapers

     

    2. ECZEMA 


    This rash appears red, itchy, scaly and cracked. It typically occurs in the folds of the skin and may blister or ooze in an open sore. While the exact cause of eczema is unknown, flare ups are often triggered by heat, dairy, soy, gluten and harsh chemicals like those found in bubble baths, washing powders and fabric softeners.

    Recommendations:

    • Eliminate triggers by using castile soap for bathing, switching to cloth wipes and removing dairy, soy and gluten from baby's diet.
    • Heavily moisturize the skin using coconut oil with an added essential oil like chamomile essential oil or calendula oil to help soothe the skin and eliminate itching.
    Suggested Products: Castile Soap, Coconut Oil, Chamomile Essential Oil, Calendula OilEczema Therapy

     

    3. AMMONIA BURN 


    This rash appears flat and blotchy and is typically isolated to just the bum. It may also have blisters. It occurs when urine comes in contact with the skin. As it breaks down, the pH of the skin rises causing enzymes from the feces to become more active resulting in an irritation (or burning) of the skin. Prolonged exposure to urine will lead to this type of rash.

    Disposable Diaper Users:

    • Change diapers more often (preferably every 2 to 3 hours)
    • Increase water intake to lower the pH in the urine
    • Apply diaper cream at every diaper change

      Cloth Diaper Users:

      • Follow the same steps above.
      • Add a fleece liner to your diapers to wick moisture away from the skin
      • Thoroughly rinse diapers in fresh water to remove concentrated urine before placing in diaper pail
      Suggested Products: Rash Therapy, Fleece Liners

       

      4. ACIDIC POOP RASH 


      This rash looks very similar to ammonia burn but also appears with a red "burn" ring around the rectum. It occurs when baby eats acidic foods like citrus fruits, tomato-based foods, and dairy. These foods increase stomach acid which comes out in baby's poop - creating a "burn" on the bum.

      Recommendations:

      • Remove acidic food from baby's diet (or your diet if you're nursing)
      • Add a few teaspoons of infant probiotics in baby's bottle to balance the acid levels in baby's stomach
      • Apply diaper cream at every diaper change
      Suggested Products: Probiotics, Rash Therapy 

       

      5. YEAST RASH 


      This rash looks acne pimples or chicken pox and covers the entire bum. This rash is caused exclusively by baby's diet - either something baby ate, or (if you're nursing) something you ate. Antibiotics, citrus fruits, dairy and gluten can destroy the balance of good and bad bacteria in baby's gut. This leads to an overgrowth of yeast (candida) fungus in baby's digestive tract, resulting in a pimple-like rash across the entire bum.

      Disposable Diaper Users:

      • Kill the fungus by applying an anti-fungal cream to the area like Nystatin or Lotrimin. As a natural alternative you can apply coconut oil, or a 50-50 diluted mix of apple cider vinegar (ACV) and water. This should be applied at every diaper change for 5 to 7 days (or until it disappears).
      • Add a few teaspoons of infant probiotics in baby's bottle to re-balance the bacteria in baby's gut
      • Remove citrus, dairy or gluten

        Cloth Diaper Users:

        • Follow the same steps above.
        • Add 1 cup of bleach to your usual diaper washing routine - up to 5 days after the rash has disappeared.
        • Thoroughly rinse diapers of urine 
        Suggested Products: Yeast Therapy, Probiotics, Apple Cider Vinegar 

         

        Note: Most diaper rashes should improve or disappear within 7 days. If the rash persists, spreads, is sensitive to the touch, blisters, bleeds or causes a fever, please contact a pediatrician immediately.

         



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