One of the biggest concerns of parents when they have a baby is the hygiene of the area that is covered by the diaper, that is, the genitals, the anus and the entire peripheral area. It is a common concern because it is an area that can become irritated to the point of becoming very red and itchy and bothers the baby.
These are the symptoms of diaper rash (red skin, scotch, …), which occurs to a greater or lesser extent in many babies, and as parents we should try to prevent, so that our son or daughter is comfortable, and know how to treat, in case they appear. That’s why today I’m going to explain everything there is to know about diaper rash.
What is diaper rash?
It is an irritation or rash that appears on the skin that is covered by the diaper, usually around the anus, in the perianal area and in the folds of the groin. Sometimes it can even affect the lower abdomen and genitals. It is not usually serious and does not usually last more than three or four days if treated correctly.
What are the most common causes of diaper rash
The area that affects already gives us enough clues as to what the causes may be. We are talking about a diaper, an absorbent element that transpires very little or nothing (depending on the materials it is made of) that ends up filling with the urine and feces of a baby. This makes the area wet and, if it is for a long time, because we do not change the diaper frequently, the area is more sensitive. In addition, as time passes, the urine begins to decompose generating irritating chemicals.
But baby pee is not the only cause of diaper rash. The poop also has an important role, because if we leave a baby with poop too long, the skin is also damaged (by the digestive substances that are in the feces) and more susceptible to irritation.
Once the skin starts to irritate the problem grows exponentially, since the irritated skin is even more vulnerable to the contact of pee and poop than healthy skin, making the problem even bigger if we keep leaving the diaper too long in contact with the skin.
Another cause is the eruption of the teeth, which usually occurs around 7-9 months and which usually coincides with an increase in the incidence of diaper rash. As it is said, when the teeth are coming out the saliva becomes a little more acidic and when it is swallowed and reaches the stomach it makes the feces and the pee are also more irritative. Many parents have noticed that a tooth was going out to our children when they suddenly saw the little ass.
The fungi are also guilty of many of the diaper rash of babies. It usually appears in the areas of the folds, as it becomes wetter and hotter, and spread to the rest of the diaper area.
Children who take a bottle suffer more than breastfed
The cause is unknown, although it may have to do with the difference of substances that take each other babies, but it is known that children who take a bottle, that is, artificial milk, are more likely to suffer from diaper rash than children who take breast milk.
How to prevent diaper rash
Once we know which the most frequent causes are, I explain below how to prevent baby diaper rash:
Change the diaper frequently: I know that today’s diapers are super absorbent and make your baby’s bottom stay dry I do not know how many hours. Well, it does not matter. Ideally, once they have stained or wet, change it as soon as possible, especially if it is a question of a baby. If it is at night I do not say that you change it every hour, basically, because after three days you will be sleeping in any corner because of waking up the baby in each change, but it is not the plan to leave it all night without changing. Luckily, since babies also poop at night, there’s nothing to do but put a clean diaper on them.
Wash the area with water and dry it with a soft towel: I know that the wipes came to the world to make everything easier, but it can never replace the work of the water going through the whole area of the diaper. The wipes collect what we clean, but it do not always collect everything because it is not the same to pass a wet wipe to let water drip, which along with a sponge clean much better. As a recommendation to not have to change the sponges every day, you can clean with the larger cloths, and then give it a pass with water and sponge so that there are no traces of poop or pee. Remember that because of the wipes (and not using water) many girls are suffering from labia minora.
Keep the area very dry: as I said, after cleaning, touch dry. Either with a soft towel, either with the dryer, or leaving the baby a while with the ass in the air. If moisture is the element that attacks the baby’s skin, it is the air that heals it.
Use cloth diapers: if your child is prone to diaper rash, if you see that the area is easily irritated, use cloth diapers, which have the peculiarity of absorbing and containing pee and poop, being breathable. Disposable use more plastic elements and are more impermeable, achieve a greater degree of humidity in the nappy area (but also often change).
Validate the use of creams or ointments for the area: formerly it gave them talc, which is great to avoid irritations and treat them, but it is no longer used because many inhaled at risk of suffering respiratory problems. Now in its absence, there are creams which works very well as it is pasty but not capable, paint the bum and the genitals of the child in white and serves as a barrier for the pee and the poop. Now, being pasty, poop, pee and cream make an all in one that we must remove when changing the diaper, unless we want that to become a breeding ground. Its use is optional, because if all the previous measures work, the area does not have to be irritated.