When babies are born, they often have really clear skin. They may have some vernix on – this is the stuff that looks a bit like lard & if they’re born early, they may well have quite a lot. This is really good for their skin – just let them absorb it. But after that their skin’s often really beautiful for…a few days! Let’s take a look at some common baby rashes!
Maybe even a few weeks but then you’ll often find they go quite spotty, quite flaky, kind of blemished skin. And newborn photographers openly admit to using Photoshop to hide these. You’ll see this lovely image supplied by ‘Little Poppitt Photography‘, a fantastic newborn photographer & you can see how they’ve actually edited out those blemishes. So if you’ve got a newborn photo shoot booked, don’t panic! They will work their magic!
When to Get Medical Help
Now there’s a general rule that if your baby has a rash then they seem unwell, they’re handling differently to usual, they’re irritable or they’ve got a raised temperature, it’s essential that you seek medical help! You can also check with the glass tests. So if your baby’s got a rash, place a glass on the spots & look if you can actually see those red spots through the glass, when you press the glass. If you can see them through, seek urgent medical attention because it could potentially be meningitis or septicemia which are really serious. But if you press that glass on the skin & the spots disappear & then when you take the glass away, they reappear, that’s really reassuring. So if baby’s handling absolutely fine they’re their usual self & they’ve got a rash it’s probably one of these things…
Varieties of Baby Rash
Now to start with, Milia. People usually refer to this as ‘milk spots’ & you normally find this onthe nose, or at least on the face. Milia is a protein that the body produces & then this actually becomes trapped under the skin, showing these kind of milk spots.
Another rash that you may see is Baby Acne. About 20% of babies get this & it looks quite similar to teenage acne &
in the same way, it’s generally thought to be produced by hormones.
Now the most common rash is Erythema Toxicum & it sounds really bad! I mean the word ‘toxic’ is in the title! But actually it should probably be called ‘common baby rash’ because about 70% of babies get this & it’s completely
benign! There’s no consequence to it at all. You just need to leave it be & it will go. You can see this as like a red base with a white middle that’s kind of got puss in it, it’s quite unsightly, and you normally see it on the baby’s face
& upper body. So if you spot this, don’t panic!
Another rash that you may spot is Heat Rash. Now some people refer to this as ‘prickly heat’. Very small red dots and
if it’s a really hot day then it’ll probably be obvious that that’s what it is. But you may spot this, not on a hot day, but if your baby’s feeding lots, if they’re having a growth spurt and feeding, cluster feeding, so you’ve got them tucked into you or if you’re holding them a lot that day, they may get hot & have heat rash.
And another rash to look out for, is Nappy Rash. Now you don’t need to use nappy creams, medicated creams, to prevent this. Instead to prevent it just when you change your baby’s nappy, quite often let their legs kick a little, let the air get to the skin to help prevent it. However you may well get splashed in the process as they do a wee! If you do spot that they’ve got some Nappy Rash then you can use something like coconut oil or pure lanolin. Both of these are natural products & often actually help it to go away before having to use something medicated.
Cradle Cap is less of a rash but more like flaky skin that you see on the baby’s scalp or kind of trapped in their hair. Now you don’t actually need to do anything to get rid of this but quite often people like to just because they think it looks a bit unsightly. If you want to try & get rid of it, smear lots of coconut oil into your baby’s scalp. Leave it for an hour or two to do its work & then get a really finely toothed comb, maybe even like a nit comb & very, very gently just
release that dead skin away. And then you’ll need to wash your baby’s hair. Don’t be tempted to use olive oil on your baby’s skin, or on their scalp because this actually changes the pH level, so something like coconut oil is
To Wrap Up…
Don’t be tempted to squeeze or pick these spots or rashes, or anything that you see and like I said before, if you think your baby’s unwell, if they’re not themselves, then always seek medical attention! And check that they pass the glass test.
Try & use non-biological washing products & try and use more natural products generally for your baby. Keep them clean, but they don’t actually need a bath daily. That’s actually quite drying for their skin.
If you’d like to know more about all things ‘life after birth’ then do check out our Life After Birth Course or one of our Comprehensive Antenatal Courses with all you need to know for pregnancy, labour, birth, pain relief, coping methods as well as life after birth.
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