Ask the Expert: What Can I Do About My Baby's Diaper Rash?
When it comes to diaper rash, an ounce of prevention is definitely worth a pound of cure.
In every issue of WebMD the Magazine, we ask our experts to answer readers' questions about a wide range of topics. In our June 2011 issue, Jennifer Shu, MD, one of WebMD's Baby Experts, answered a question dealing with a baby's chronic diaper rash.
Q: My son keeps getting diaper rash. What can I do?
A: Diaper rash -- that red, bumpy, or raw skin in the diaper area -- is a very common condition for babies. It's also preventable.
First, be sure to change your baby's diaper soon after she pees or poops. Consider disposable diapers with a wet-diaper indicator that turns colors when moist, or simply change the diaper every two hours or so. Also change the diaper if your baby has gotten sweaty or been in water.
Leave your baby's bottom bare for a few minutes before putting on a new diaper. That gives the area a chance to thoroughly dry. You may want to consider using a soft washcloth with a mild soap and warm water instead of commercial baby wipes, which can contain alcohol and other substances that cause rashes and irritation. Then consider applying an over-the-counter diaper rash cream to keep moisture off your baby's skin.
If the rash persists, see your doctor. It may be a yeast or bacterial infection that requires special care.