When To Worry About Baby’s Rash
While most rashes are not serious, a few need very close attention:
- Fluid-filled blisters can indicate a serious infection, like a bacterial infection or herpes.
- Small red or purplish dots over the body can be caused by a viral infection or a potentially very serious bacterial infection. These will not lighten with pressure. Any infant with possible petechiae should be evaluated by a doctor immediately.
“The skin,” Darmstadt, G. and Sidbury, R. Nelson Textbook of Pediatrics, 17th edition. Behrman, R., Kliegman, R., and Jenson, H. , Saunders, 2004.
When To Seek Help
Depending on the cause, it can take several weeks for the dryness to go away.
If you dont see any improvements at all within 1 week of treatment, it may be time to have a pediatrician look at your babys scalp. They might recommend a prescription-strength shampoo or a steroid cream to treat any underlying inflammation. If you dont already have a pediatrician, the Healthline FindCare tool can help you find a physician in your area.
Also see your babys doctor if your babys scalp starts:
What Causes Dry Scalp In Babies
Dry scalp in babies may be linked to underlying conditions of the skin, such as seborrheic dermatitis or eczema. In some cases, you may also notice your babys scalp is drier during certain times of the year, or in response to their shampoo.
Below are the possible causes of your babys dry scalp, as well as the key symptoms to look for.
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Causes Of Skin Peeling On Babys Face
Even though peeling can occur on any part of your babys body, you might notice more peeling on your babys face. Again, this is probably nothing to worry about, and it should go away on its own.
Keep in mind that the skin on a babys face is sometimes more sensitive than the skin on other parts of their body, so its prone to irritation. Other things can cause dryness on their little faces, too.
Spitting up and drooling can dry out and irritate their delicate skin, as well as exposure to the elements . These factors, and those listed below, might contribute to extra peeling and flakiness on their face.
Whats The Difference Between Dry Skin And Eczema In Babies
Wondering if that dry patch is actually a sign that your sweetie might have a more serious skin issue? Dry skin and eczema can have some symptoms in common. But there a few ways to tell the difference .
- Eczema patches have a more distinct appearance. Run-of-the-mill dry skin can look rough or scaly. But skin with eczema can also be inflamed, and can look red or pink or red-brown, purplish or grayish . Skin with eczema can also develop tiny, fluid-filled pimples that eventually burst.
- Eczema shows up in different spots. Both eczema and dry skin can appear on your babys hands, feet, face and lips. But its also common for eczema to develop in areas not typically prone to regular dryness, such as behind your babys ears, on her scalp, in the creases of her elbows or behind her knees.
- Eczema may not just flare up when its cold or dry. Like dry skin, eczema can worsen due to cold or dry weather or from too-warm baths. But if your baby has eczema, you might also notice her skin can become irritated by moisture , dust, scratchy fabrics and certain soaps or detergents. Keep in mind, however, that eczema affects every child differently.
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What Should I Know About Baby Eczema
Its pretty normal for babies to have dry skin on their faces and have dry skin patches. But its important to know the difference between dry skin and eczema. Eczema is usually considered as a baby dry skin rash. It shows up as red, itchy, and rough patches on your babys skin, and usually rears its head during the first few months of a newborns life. Eczema occurs when the body makes too few fatty cells called ceramides. Without enough of these cells, your skin becomes dehydrated and dry. It can run in families, so if you or your partner had eczema, chances are your little one might have it too.
The good news is its totally normal and most infants outgrow it by school-age if not sooner.
Baby eczema is different than cradles cap, which is just a cute term to describe a baby with dry skin on their head. Cradle cap is normal for newborns to have and is characterized by rough, crusty bumps that sit on top of your babys scalp. It isnt painful or itchy, though, and usually goes away within a few weeks to a few months with the help of a mild shampoo.
Keep Their Skin Hydrated
Just like with their bathtime products, choose gentle skincare products that leave your babys skin soft, smooth, and hydrated. Our Moisturizing Baby Lotion is a plant-based product that contains the gentlest blend of nourishing botanicals to soothe and protect your babys sensitive or dry skin. Another option is our Sensitive Baby All Natural Healing Ointment. From your little ones lips to their diaper area, this healing ointment does it all! It contains medical-grade colloidal oatmeal to help treat and prevent eczema, itchiness, flare-ups, rashes, and dry spots.
Also try our Sensitive Baby Fragrance Free Miracle Cream to soothe and comfort your little one’s skin!Daily use of an all-natural, gentle lotion or ointment is going to be key when it comes to keeping your babys dry skin at bay. Using the right products can help protect your babys skin and keep it hydrated all throughout the day!
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How To Treat Dry Skin In Babies
Dry skin is caused due to a variety of conditions, and hence, the treatment varies. The various methods are mentioned below .
- Topical ointments for eczema, psoriasis, and cradle cap provide relief and prevent dry skin. Such topical creams and ointments target the fundamental problem of dry skin.
- A moisturizing lotion is prescribed by the doctor for everyday use, depending on the intensity of the infants dry skin.
- Liquid bandages are given to infants with severely cracked and bleeding skin. Liquid bandages work like regular bandages and can be purchased over the counter without a doctors prescription.
Most Common Types Of Baby Rashes
Are small red bumps popping up on your babys body? There are many possible reasons for baby rashes, so it can be difficult to know what causes them.
Chances are, its something completely harmless that will resolve itself within a few days. But its still important to keep an eye on any rashes that pop up on your little one.
Our medical team will give you the lowdown on the 17 most common types of baby rashes to help you identify those bumps and set your mind at ease.
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How Often Should I Bathe My Baby
If your baby has eczema, a daily bath with an emollient will help soothe the eczema and reduce dry skin and itching, while cleansing the skin, removing dirt and repairing the skin barrier. Use leave-on emollients instead of soaps, baby washes or bubble bath, or alternatively use emollient wash products or bath additives. Avoid any perfumed products and keep the water tepid, as heat can aggravate eczema.
Restore Your Newborns Dry Skin
Dry skin or peeling skin is entirely normal in newborn babies. It often affects overdue babies since they had less vernix to protect them during the last few weeks before delivery. If it continues or causes irritation, it could be due to infant eczema.
Keep your baby hydrated and their skin moisturized with lotion. Use a humidifier in the room, and minimize exposure to cold air. This should help resolve the problem. Remember the red flag signs of redness, swelling, or itchiness, and call your pediatrician if these are present.
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What Is Vernix Caseosa
Around the 17th to 20th week of pregnancy, a white substance called vernix caseosa or vernix settles on top of the skin. This is a creamy, white matter made from water, proteins, and lipids .
The high water content and lipids of the vernix create two-way protection. The water prevents skin dryness, and the lipids block the surrounding fluids from direct contact with the skin.
In utero, the vernix also prevents the skin from shedding or peeling. This means theres a buildup of old tissue ready to peel once the vernix is gone.
During the last weeks of gestation, the vernix begins to dissolve. This is why most overdue babies usually have little, while preterm babies likely have a lot on their skin after birth.
Postpartum vernix is a good thing as the vernix also acts as a natural moisturizer. My little one looked like she was covered in frosting!
Generally, the vernix disappears after five days or when your baby has their first bath. This can trigger an avalanche of skin shedding.
The most shedding typically occurs within the first two to three weeks. This is when your babys skin adjusts to the dry air after being submerged for so long. The new outer layer of skin will be tougher, more resilient, and ready to take on the world.
Caring For The Umbilical Cord
Water is all you need to clean it. Do not pull on the stump, even when it starts to come off. It will fall off on its own. You can prevent your babys diaper from rubbing the area by folding it over.
Contact your doctor if your baby has a fever or if the umbilical area:
- appears red and swollen,
- oozes yellow pus,
- produces a foul-smelling discharge, or
- bleeds significantly .
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Use Gentle Laundry Detergent
Think about it: everything that goes through the wash ends up on your babys skin. Their clothes, sheets, and blankets are starters. But the bibs and burp cloths that you constantly use around their neck and face do, too. And if your baby snuggles up to you, they lay their head on your chest. So whatever detergent you use on your clothes ends up on their skin. Finally, if you lay your baby down on your bed to change them, the residue from the detergent and dryer sheets can affect their skin. To keep any of these things from becoming an issue and irritating your little ones skin, try using a gentle, fragrance-free laundry detergent.
When To Call Your Babys Healthcare Provider
After the first few weeks of the typical newborn skin peeling and flaking have passed, if your babyâs skin still seems dry or even irritated, even when you’ve followed all the tips above, itâs best to get in touch with your babyâs healthcare provider. Sometimes dry, flaky skin may be the result of an allergic reaction or skin rash that may need to be treated with a prescription medication.If the red, flaky skin is in the diaper area, it may be diaper rash. Diaper rash can often be managed at home with frequent diaper changes, exposing the skin to air more often, and by using a barrier ointment, but if the diaper rash looks severe or doesnât go away, itâs worth contacting your babyâs provider for personalized advice on what to try next.
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The Dry Skin Solution For Baby Skin
There are many baby dry skin remedies parents can choose from, but those that focus on restoring and maintaining the skin barrier may offer additional benefits. Lotions, creams and washes that contain ceramides can help keep skin hydrated and healthy. Research has shown that using these ingredients early in life may even help to prevent atopic dermatitis in adulthood.8 CeraVe Baby Moisturizing Cream, is a rich formula that includes three essential ceramides to help maintain babys skin barrier and keep skin hydrated all day.
Other hydrating ingredients to look for in baby skincare products include hyaluronic acid, a humectant that binds water to the surface layer of skin9, and dimethicone, a silicone-based polymer that helps create a seal on the skin, locking in moisture.10 CeraVe Baby Moisturizing Lotion contains both, providing all-day moisture while being gentle on your babys delicate skin.
Now that you have a sense of exactly how your little ones skin is different than your own, as well as how to nourish dry, sensitive baby skin, following a skincare routine will be simple. Heres to smoother days ahead!
Does My Child Need To See A Doctor About Dry Skin
Probably not. But you should take your child to your GP if your child has:
- dry skin that doesnt get better with the treatment described below
- patches of dry skin that are inflamed and itchy
- patches of painful dry skin
- dry skin that has yellow or inflamed spots on top.
Your GP might send your child to see a dermatologist if the dryness doesnt get better with standard treatment.
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Dry Scalp Vs Cradle Cap
While a dry scalp may be noticeably drier, with white colored scales, cradle cap tends to cause oilier and crusty-looking scales. Cradle cap also tends to be yellowish or red in color.
Also, while cradle cap symptoms may appear on your babys face, not all underlying causes of dry scalp will spread to other parts of the body.
Once youve identified the cause of your babys dry scalp, its usually treatable at home.
Fact: Babys Skin Has A Higher Ph Than Adult Skin
In adults, a slightly acidic skin surface mantle helps defend the skin against external pathogens. Baby skin has a higher pH than adult skin, which makes it more susceptible. Skin care products formulated at the proper pH for babys skin, along with essential ceramides, can strengthen skins barrier to help protect it.5
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Did My Baby Develop Eczema Because I Couldnt Breastfeed
As eczema is caused by genetic factors, bottle-feeding a baby definitely cannot cause eczema. In fact, current research is divided, with some studies showing positive effects of breastfeeding and others showing no significant effects at all.
Neither is there enough evidence to advise pregnant or breastfeeding women to avoid specific foods to protect unborn children from atopic eczema or any other atopic condition.
Ways To Manage And Treat Newborn Peeling Skin
Although newborn peeling skin is very typical, some parents feel better if they choose to manage the dry skin.
Your first option is actually quite simple: do nothing. Follow basic newborn hygiene and eventually the skin peeling stops in healthy babies.
Other parents take more proactive approaches, including these 7 tips:
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Why Newborns And Older Babies Have Peeling Skin
A newbornâs skin is delicate, especially right after birth, and it’s likely that your infantâs skin may be peeling. Flaky or peeling skin is normal at this stage and doesnât require any special treatment.Basically, in your newbornâs first few days and weeks, the top layer of skin sheds. This skin peeling tends to be more common for babies who were born past their due date.Itâs not just during the early newborn phase that you may notice peeling skin. Childrenâs skin is typically thinner and more delicate than adult skin and this means that it can lose moisture faster and dry out more quickly. Therefore, donât be surprised if at some point you see dryness, flaking, or peeling skin in your older baby or toddler. If your baby has a skin condition like atopic dermatitis , you may also notice more frequent dryness, flaking, or peeling.
What Do I Need To Know About Newborn Skin Peeling
In short, newborn skin peeling is normal. Its rarely something you need to be concerned about. You can simply wait it out if you choose.
Other parents try some of the things mentioned above. However, you can simply enjoy your newborn and know newborn skin peeling is just a typical part of babys transition from womb to world.
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How Do I Treat Eczema
Once your baby has a flare up, try to treat it as soon as possible. Otherwise, hell rub his skin and aggravate it further, making the area extra vulnerable and dry. Follow the same advice as above in the treatment of eczema, and also remember the following points:
- Keeping your newborns skin moisturized is the most important factor. Special moisturizing creams like Aveeno or Cetaphil help treat the condition and soothe the skin.
- Moisture is a trigger for eczema. Keep your infant cool and moisture-free in lightweight clothing and thin blankets. Wipe away drool and saliva immediately.
- Keep your babys nails short to prevent him from scratching his skin. You could also cover his hands with mittens to prevent rubbing.
- Avoid clothes with tags and fabrics that rub up against the skin when dressing your baby.
- Heres a lesser-known fact: breast milk is a great medicine for eczema, due to its anti-microbial properties. Simply rub a few drops onto the rash regularly when youre breastfeeding and see the difference.
- Dairy, soy and wheat are known to be common triggers for eczema. Switching formulas sometimes helps.
- If the itching persists, your babys doctor might suggest a hydrocortisone cream and/or antihistamines to reduce the itching.
This article by the National Eczema Society is a good resource to find out more about the condition