Rashes (Children)

Medically Reviewed by Carol DerSarkissian, MD on March 16, 2024
2 min read

Rashes in young children can be upsetting, but they're common and often not serious unless there are other symptoms.

Your child:

  • Is younger than 6 months
  • Has a fever along with a rash
  • Has a rash that oozes or appears red, swollen, or wet, which could be an infection
  • Has a rash that goes past the diaper area
  • Has a rash that is more serious in skin creases
  • Has a rash that doesn't get better after 2 days
  • Has a rash that peels, especially one on the palms or soles
  • Has flat, small red spots on the skin that don't fade if you press them
  • Looks unwell or is not feeding well
  • Has hives
  • Has bruises not due to an injury
  • Try to figure out whether the rash is due to coming into contact with a common irritant such as poison ivy, chemicals, soaps, nickel jewelry, or a pet.
  • Could it be a diaper rash? Make sure you are changing the diapers frequently and applying protective diaper cream after cleaning the area. If this does not help, see your doctor.
  • Wash the rash with mild soap but don't scrub. Rinse with warm water.
  • Pat the skin dry, rather than rubbing it.
  • Don't cover the rash.
  • Put a wet cloth on the rash to ease pain and itching.
  • Trim your child's fingernails to help prevent scratching.
  • Put soft gloves on your child at night to avoid scratching.