Most babies tend to develop a rash or skin blemish of some kind during the first year. While these can be quite worrying and sometimes unsightly, they often disappear without any treatment, some rashes are more persistent however, and it is important to try find the cause, with a view to avoiding a recurrence of the problem.
Because a young baby’s skin is delicate and sensitive, it can be easily irritated. Use only mild soap or cleansing lotion on your baby’s skin. Like adults some children are allergic to highly scented preparations and soaps.
1) Try using “Hypo – ALLERGENIC” products and soaps.
2) Baby should wear soft cotton materials, next to baby’s skin.
3) Baby’s clothes should be wash well and rinsed well thoroughly.
4) Some Biological washing powders can cause skin irritation in some babies, switch to a non-biological washing powder if baby has an unexplained rash.
Always consult your doctor if your child has a troublesome rash or severe skin problem. Never use Hydrocortisone cream unless it is prescribed by a doctor.
RASHES: MILIA – Consists of tiny white spot commonly seen around the nose in new-born babies. These disappear in time and should be left alone.
MILK RASH: This is a spotty, red facial rash which is common during the first few months. It clears up without treatment within a few weeks.
CHAPPING AND DRIBBLING: Strong wind or Dribbling due to teething can cause a rash on the face. Apply a soothing cream or petroleum jelly to protect the skin and heal soreness.
DRY SKIN: Is a common problem, especially in winter or Harmattan cold conditions. The skin feels rough to the touch and may be itchy. If the problem is severe it may lead to eczema. So early treatment is important.
Never use soap for cleansing. Instead bathe the child in a Bath Oil such as Oilatum, Emulsiderm or baby oil. After bath carefully pat the baby’s skin dry. Then apply an oily moisturizing cream or petroleum jelly, which is absorbed into the skin.
Sudocrem, which consists of ZINC AND CASTOR OIL, is a very good medicated cream for both mother and baby and the whole family.
PRICKLY HEAT: Tiny red spots with minute blisters may appear when the skin becomes over heated. Remove some clothing, bathe the skin in lukewarm water and dry carefully.
URTICARIA: Is an allergic rash, which is also known as “HIVES” or “NETTLE RASH”. There may be blistering or typical raised white wheals surrounded by red skin. It may be due to a reaction to food or medicine or to contact with a plant clothing or animal fur Treatment for URTICARIA. Apply a cold compress with a towel of flannel with cold water to relieve swelling and calamine lotion to help sooth itching. If the URTICARIA is severe, affecting area around eyes or mouth visit your doctor.
CRADLE CAP: This is a common condition in young babies, in which dry white or yellow scales form a crusty “cap” on the scalp. Wash your baby’s hair daily with a mild baby shampoo as soon as any sign of cradle cap appears. If the condition gets worse, soak the crusts overnight in warm olive oil, sunflower cooking oil, palm oil or baby oil. In the morning wash babies head with baby shampoo or a special shampoo for CRADLE CAP repeat this treatment over a few days to remove all the crusts.
SEBORRHOEIC DERMATITIS: This starts as thick yellow scales on the scalp. A brownish-red scaly rash may then spread to the cheeks, eyebrows to behind the ears and nappy area. This condition is sometimes confused with infantile eczema but unlike eczema it causes little discomfort and usually clears by the time the child is between six and 13 months old. See your doctor.
ECZEMA: Infantile or “Atopic” eczema affects one in ten children in the first year with patches of dry irritable, itchy on face, behind ears, and knees, neck and elbow creases, THE SKIN IS ROUGH, RED AND INFLAMMED WITH TINY PIMPLES OR BLISTERS WHICH MAY WEEP. ECZEMA is not an infection but can be infected if the child scratches because of severe itching, keep the fingernails short so that the nails don’t harbour bacteria.
CAUSES OF ECZEMA: Include allergies to substances such as house dust and detergents. IN SOME CHILDREN, FOOD SUCH AS COW’S MILK OR EGGS CAN TRIGGER OR ECZEMA. However, it is important not to change your child diet without consulting your doctor.
A CHILD WITH ECZEMA MAY NEED SPECIALIST TREATMENT: In Nigeria and some African countries, Herbal treat is used e.g. the RED ACALIFA PLANT LEAD IS BOILED IN HOT WATER AND IS CALLED “AGBO” EWE PUPA and is used to bath the child and also give to the child to drink in order to wash the infection from the blood of the child and the infection is passed out through urine and faces baby’s stool. Eczema can also be caused by teething and sometime hereditary. ZINC AND CASTOR OIL CREAMS like SODOCREME Work wonderfully on eczema and other skin rashes e.g. nappy rash.
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