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6 Skin Conditions in Babies Parents Should be Aware of

Babies are such a joy, but with that comes new and unfamiliar territory. There are a few skin conditions that can crop up in babies, and parents should be aware of them. Here are six of the most common skin conditions in babies, and what parents should look out for.

1. Eczema

Eczema is a chronic skin condition that affects millions of people of all ages. For infants and young children, the condition can be especially difficult to manage. While the exact cause of eczema is unknown, it is believed to be linked to a combination of genetic and environmental factors.

Symptoms include dry, itchy skin that may crack or bleed. Eczema can also lead to secondary infections, as well as sleep loss and emotional distress. The good news is that eczema can be effectively managed with a variety of treatments. These include over-the-counter moisturizers and corticosteroid creams, as well as prescription medications. Keep in mind that treatment often requires a trial-and-error approach to find what works best for your child.

2. Psoriasis

Many people are familiar with psoriasis, a common skin condition that causes red, scaly patches. However, what many people don’t realize is that psoriasis can also affect babies. While it is not clear what causes infantile psoriasis, it is thought to be related to an overactive immune system.

The condition usually appears as a red, scaly rash on the scalp, face, or trunk. In severe cases, the rash can spread to the arms and legs. Baby psoriasis is often very itchy, and the rash can be painful. If your baby has psoriasis, it is important to seek medical treatment. Left untreated, the condition can lead to infection and other serious complications.

3. Cradle Cap

One of the things that parents should be aware of is cradle cap, a skin condition that can cause dry, scaly patches on a baby’s scalp.

Cradle cap is thought to be caused by an overproduction of oil, and it is most common in babies between the ages of two and four months. One of the best cradle cap shampoos contains ketoconazole, an antifungal agent that helps to reduce inflammation and encourage healing.

Parents should also be sure to brush their baby’s hair gently with a soft brush, and they should avoid using harsh chemicals or fragrances near the affected area.

4. Diaper Rash

Diaper rash is a very common skin condition that affects babies, usually between the ages of 4 and 15 months. The rash is caused by contact with urine or stool, which irritates the skin and causes inflammation.

Diaper rash can also be caused by allergies, infections, or prolonged exposure to wet or dirty diapers. Symptoms of diaper rash include redness, itching, and soreness. In severe cases, the rash may blister or bleed.

Diaper rash is usually treated with over-the-counter antifungal creams or ointments. However, if the rash does not respond to treatment, it is important to see a doctor as it may be a sign of a more serious problem.

5. Jaundice

Jaundice is yellowing of the skin and eyes. Jaundice in newborns usually appears between the second and fourth day after birth. It results when there is too much bilirubin, a yellow pigment, in the blood.

Normally, the liver gets rid of bilirubin, but a newborn’s liver may not be fully developed yet. Jaundice itself is harmless, but if left untreated, it can lead to more serious health problems.

If you notice that your baby’s skin or eyes are yellowing, be sure to mention it to your pediatrician. With early treatment, jaundice is usually no cause for concern.

6. Baby Acne

Baby acne is a common and temporary skin condition that develops on a baby’s face or body. The cause of baby acne is not clear, but it is believed to be related to hormones that are passed from the mother to the baby during pregnancy. Baby acne typically appears as small, red bumps or whiteheads. It is usually most evident on the cheeks, nose, and forehead. It’s not painful or harmful, and it does not require treatment.

However, some parents may wish to consult a doctor or dermatologist if the acne persists or seems to be getting worse. Baby acne usually goes away on its own within a few weeks or months. In the meantime, parents can help to soothe their baby’s skin by using a mild cleanser and avoiding harsh chemicals or scrubbing.

The Bottom Line

While skin conditions are common in babies, most are harmless and will resolve on their own. However, some conditions can require treatment. Parents should be aware of common skin conditions that may affect their baby, and speak to a doctor if they have any concerns.