Dr. Alexandra Murr on March 12, 2018
You opened a diaper to a full blow out, removed the soiled clothing, and used a ton of wipes to clean up. Now that the baby is clean and you’re ready for a new outfit, it’s done, right? Maybe not. Big blowouts and moisture on the skin from urinating can lead to diaper rash.
Diaper rash is red, inflamed skin in the genital and rectal areas, and the irritated skin may have pustules or small blisters. Diaper rashes are common and can be caused by skin irritants or contact (dermatitis) with body fluids. Other causes of diaper rash include changes in the child’s diet (breast milk or formula) or allergies. These rashes may become infected by bacteria or yeast normally present on the skin. Diaper rashes are often uncomfortable for infants and toddlers, and the best treatment is prevention – so avoid irritants on the skin with frequent diaper changes.
Ways to prevent diaper rash
- Be sure to check diapers at least every 2 hours as children may not be able to communicate they soiled the diaper.
- Wipe the skin to clean the diaper area every time the diaper is soiled. Moisture from urine is on the baby’s skin even if the diaper absorbed most of the fluid.
- Clean bowel moments front to back. Start with the front genitals and clean to the rectum. This is especially important to keep bacterial out of female genitals.
- Allow air time. Allowing the skin to be bare with open exposure to air will help the skin heal. Be sure to have a protective absorbing pad on the floor or beneath the child to prevent the child from soiling the area.
Frequent diaper changes will help prevent diaper rash but what should you do once a diaper rash occurs?
How to care for diaper rash
- Clean the area with water and soft cloths as they are less irritating then disposable wipes
- Apply a cream. Zinc oxide aids in soothing, adds a protective barrier, and helps heal the skin. Another effective barrier is petroleum jelly. To apply, place a little dab of cream on your finger and apply to the front genitals, then back to the rectum. Be sure to apply cream inside the labia as well as inside the butt checks.
- If the cream does not improve the rash within 2 to 3 days, take the child to his or her pediatrician as a prescription may be needed if the child is diagnosed with a secondary bacteria or yeast infection.
Diaper rashes are often uncomfortable for the baby or toddler. Warm baths may help soothe the skin. Some cream and time should help with healing.
For more information about caring for children with diaper rashes and other common ailments, a Health Basics course is available within the Intermediate Childcare Certification Program from Amslee Institute.
About the Author. Dr. Alexandrea Murr earned her Doctorate of Nursing Practice from University of Toledo, Master of Science in Nursing from University of Phoenix, and Bachelor of Art in Art from Buffalo State College. Dr. Murr is a Board Certified Nurse Executive and works in private practice in New York. Dr. Murr is also an adjunct faculty member of Amslee Institute, an organization dedicated to professional training and certification of elite Nannies, Au Pairs, Babysitters, and other childcare providers.
Amslee Institute provides licensed online childcare classes with diploma and certification programs based on a curriculum specifically designed to advance the skills of Nannies and Sitters. Amslee Institute has over 30 college faculty with a passion for education and childcare, bringing them together to help childcare providers gain practical skills and qualifications that benefit their careers and the children in their care.
Popular Resource Articles
3 Ways to Help Children Adjust to Daylight Savings Time
Spring Forward and Fall Back for Daylight Savings Time.
8 Ways to Celebrate Your Nanny Family on Boss’s Day
Boss’s Day provides an opportunity for nannies and sitters to show appreciation to their nanny families.
Babysitter, Nanny, Family Assistant: What Do I Need?
You have young children and need time to work. Childcare is a must, so where do you start?
Recent Resource Articles
How to Manage Potty Training Regressions
You want to celebrate – but you’re afraid you might jinx it.
Tips to Manage the Back to School Transition
No matter how the child feels about returning to school, you can help with the transition by doing a few simple things.
What is the Montessori Educational Approach?
The Montessori method views the child as the one who is naturally eager for knowledge.
4 Times Nannies Should Earn $20+ an Hour
If your family needs or wants higher quality or specialized childcare, nanny wages can exceed $20 an hour.