The problem of diaper rash during a child’s early years is usually a common, short-term condition. However, if left unattended it could lead to considerable agony. Here are some tips to handle it.
By Dr Raina Nikhil Nahar
Diaper rash is almost an inevitable part of life for parents of newborns and infants. It is a common problem among children under two years of age. A majority of babies experience it in the first three years of their life. Though not a dangerous condition, it cannot be ignored.
Diaper rash normally appears as a red irritation on the skin on the baby’s bottom or genital area. The rashes may or may not occur within the folds of the skin in the area.
In a majority of cases, diaper rash is the result of friction caused by wet diapers rubbing against the baby’s sensitive skin. Exposure to faeces, urine or cleaning agents can also lead to skin redness. The acid in the urine and stool causes irritation. Rashes caused by these irritants normally appear in the area which comes into contact with the diaper, and does not occur in the folds of the skin.
Adequate skin care is the best preventive method. Follow these tips:
Do you know that something as simple and harmless like a diaper can have shocking facts associated with it? Read the below article to know more.
Despite the best precautions, your baby may still develop a diaper rash. If that happens, try some simple steps to contain the problem and cure it.
The diaper rash may become painful and cause extreme discomfort to the child if it persists beyond a week. Professional medical advice should be sought if practical and simple solutions fail to solve the problem.
If the rash worsens and/or spreads to other parts of the body, seek immediate medical attention.
If you cannot identify the cause of the rash, take the baby to a doctor promptly.
If the rash is followed by diarrhoea which persists for more than 48 hours, medical assistance is imperative.
Diagnosis is usually based on physical examination and an understanding of the child’s medical history. Laboratory tests are not usually required, but if the doctor feels that the problem is due to an allergy, a skin test may be done. Based on the findings, a treatment regimen can be worked out.
It is only in rare cases that hospitalisation is required for treating diaper rash.
This too shall pass!
The good news is, diaper rash is a passing problem. Once a child is toilet-trained, and does not need to wear diapers, the problem will automatically disappear.
Dr Raina Nikhil Nahar is a Consultant Cosmetologist and Dermatologist at Nanavati Super Speciality Hospital, Mumbai.
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