It’s 3 am and you hear your 4-month-old baby screaming through the baby monitor. In your foggy, dreamlike haze you make your way to the nursery for a feeding and a diaper change. When you open up the diaper, that is when you see it. A red, irritated, poop covered rash on your sweet baby’s bottom. As a mom and a nurse, when this happened to me I panicked. I had done everything right! I changed her frequently, applied tons of diaper cream, let her air out as much as possible, but the truth is, this happens to every baby.
A baby’s skin is very sensitive, and is very prone to diaper rash. Babies are more susceptible to irritated skin as they start to sleep through the night more frequently and stay in diapers longer. There are steps parents can take to clear up the chafed skin, but new moms and dads need to know how to properly handle it when it does happen
When a newborn has a diaper rash it is usually mild and can be treated at home. If the baby’s bottom has red raised pimples, flaky white scales, or is very inflamed, a trip to the pediatrician is warranted. Also, if the rash becomes worse or not any better after 2-3 days of at home care, parents should bring the baby into the dr. Usually, a diaper rash is a small red area that looks irritated. It can be along the diaper lining of the skin or on the bottom, usually any place that is exposed to wetness.
Keep Good Hand Hygiene
The most important thing parents can do is practice good hand hygiene. Washing hands is such a simple but important task. It should be a habit to wash your hands before and after a diaper change to prevent the spread of germs and bacteria. But sometimes it is hard to get to a sink, but there are products that can help.
Gently Clean Irritated Skin
It is also important to properly clean the irritated skin. Fragrance-free wipes and mild cleaners should be used on the baby’s bottom. Parents should not rub the area, but pat dry the skin. A baby’s diaper rash can be more irritated if the skin is rubbed harshly.
Apply Diaper Rash Cream
Next, parents need to apply a diaper cream that is zinc oxide or petroleum based. Diaper rash creams provide a barrier to sensitive skin and aid in healing. Diaper rash cream is easier and more hygienic to apply if an applicator is used such as the SwipenSnap. It can be used with any diaper rash cream the parents prefer and goes on gently and easy to the baby’s bottom. It also keeps parents skin clean and prevents any cross-contamination of germs to the baby. After the baby is clean, dry, and lotion up, a clean diaper should be applied and checked and changed often.
Diaper Free Time
Let the skin breath by giving your baby diaper free time (super cute photo op)! And make sure you let the skin dry before applying the diaper cream. Pediatricians recommend using a diaper to fan the skin for 30 sec
Diaper rash is inevitable and will happen. New moms and dads are loaded up with so much stuff for the baby and are usually given no instruction or guidance on what to expect. Knowing the simple steps and care one should take makes it a little less scary and easier to handle the new parent problems.