Young children commonly get diaper rashes, usually because of contact with chemicals in their urine or stool that is on their skin too long. Even with the best care though, some kids still get diaper rashes...
Most diaper rashes should quickly improve in two to three days with treatment with an over the counter diaper rash cream. These diaper rash creams include those that contain zinc oxide, like:
- A+D Ointment
- Balmex Diaper Rash Ointment
- Desitin Creamy Diaper Rash Ointment
- Aveeno Diaper Rash Cream
- Burt's Bees Diaper Ointment
and those made with petrolatum, like:
There are also speciality diaper rash creams that are becoming more popular and more widely available. These include:
- Triple Paste
- Boudreaux's Butt Paste
Shop Online - diaper rash creams
You can use any of these diaper rash creams and ointments, both to prevent and treat diaper rashes. If your infant isn't prone to diaper rashes, you likely don't need to apply a diaper rash cream after each diaper change though.
Other ways to prevent diaper rashes include:
- frequent diaper changes
- making sure your child is completely dry before putting on a new diaper
- allowing your baby to 'air out' without a diaper at times
- changing wipes or brands of diapers if you think they may be causing a problem
- avoiding wipes and using plain warm water or a mild soap to clean your baby
Once your child has a diaper rash, you should continue to change their diapers frequently. Although keeping them clean is important, be sure that you don't make the rash worse by vigorously rubbing your child's skin. A quirt bottle with warm water can be much more gentle and better tolerated by an infant with a diaper rash. Next, pat him dry and apply a generous amount of your favorite diaper rash cream or ointment.
If a diaper rash isn't improving with proper treatment, or if it becomes bright red and surround by small red dots, then your infant may have a candidal yeast infection. This type of diaper rash is treated by using antifungal creams that your doctor can prescribe, such as Nystatin.
Warning: Don't use Lotrisone, a combination of clotrimazole (an antifungal) and a very strong steroid to treat your infant's diaper rash. The steroid is too strong and can lead to serious side effects, including skin atrophy and growth retardation. Most other steroid creams and ointments should also be avoided on the skin under a diaper. The only exception to this is using a mild OTC strength steroid for a few days under your Pediatrician's supervision, as this can be helpful when you have a diaper rash that is very raw and irritated.
Persistent diaper rashes can also be caused by other medical problems, like seborrheic dermatitis and psoriasis, especially if the rash extends outside the diaper area. A Pediatric dermatologist can be helpful when your child has a diaper rash that isn't going away.