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What Causes Rashes in Babies

The occurrence of rashes in babies could signal a wide range of health problems. This article helps you understand the various factors behind the rashes.
Skin rashes are, so to say, an unavoidable part of childhood. Bumps, blotches, rashes, etc., are common for almost every child. These conditions may be mild for some babies, while severe for some. Babies may suffer from various types of skin rashes, which may have several factors to blame for. The following describes some common types of rashes that occur mostly in babies, and their causal factors..

Facts on Baby Rash

I have put up a table, which explains to you about the most common types of skin conditions that affect babies, and their possible causes. As an additional information, I have also included some of the most characteristic symptoms of each of these types of condition.

Common Skin Rashes Causal Agents Characteristic Symptoms
Cradle Crap Exact cause is unknown. However, hormones that are passed on to the child by the mother, or a yeast fungus, may the contributing factors.
  • Development of thick crusts on the scalp.
  • Dandruff, accompanied by skin flakes.
  • White or yellow scales may develop, with skin flakes.
Psoriasis Even the cause of this kind of skin rash in babies has not been fully understood. Doctors believe that the body's own immune system attacks the healthy cells of the skin.
  • The skin may develop red patches, which are worsened by silvery scales.
  • The affected skin may get dry, itchy, cracked and may bleed.
  • Nails become thicker and ridged.
  • Swollen joints.
Diaper Rash The causes include prolonged exposure of the baby's skin to stool or urine, changes in food, yeast infection or one caused by bacteria, wearing tight diapers, and skin that is too sensitive. The rash could also be caused by products like detergents, lotions, powder, etc. Prolong consumption of antibiotics by nursing mothers also make their babies vulnerable to develop diaper rash.
  • The skin of the buttocks, thighs and that of the genitals become red and tender to touch.
  • Crying more than usual while diaper changing.
Milia The surface of the skin has small pockets near them. So, when tiny skin flakes get trapped in these pockets, milia sets in.
  • Development of white bumps which are common in the nose, chin and cheeks.
  • Some babies may develop acne.
Scabies This type of baby skin rash is caused by coming in contact with the scabies mite.
  • Severe itching, that is usually worse at night.
  • Scalp, face, neck, palms of hands and soles of feet are commonly affected.
Heat Rash This rash is caused by clogging of some of the sweat glands of the baby. This may be because the glands have not matured, or a climate is too hot and humid. Other causes may be wearing clothing that prevents perspiration, use of creams and ointments, and overheating.
  • Development of blisters and bumps. These may be tiny and clear, and break easily.
  • The affected area may itch or prick.
Baby Eczema This condition may be regarded as idiopathic, as its cause is unknown. Contributing factors, however, according to experts may be dry, irritated skin, which is further worsened by the immune system.
  • The baby's skin may develop patches red to brownish-gray in color.
  • Severe itching, most of the time at night.
  • Small bumps; may leak fluid.
  • The skin may become thick and develop cracks.
Baby Yeast Infection Commonly, this condition is caused by a yeast infection of Candida albicans.
  • Red skin rash on the baby's bottom.
  • This rash may be accompanied by small red bumps.
Drooling rash Excessive drooling happens to be the cause of this type of rash.
  • Rashes around the mouth, chin and neck.

This was all for the various factors behind the onset of rashes in babies. Know that most of them do not raise severe concerns for the baby's health, however, there are some which do. So, as soon as you notice any of these symptoms bothering your baby, make haste to a pediatrician and fix things early. Hope this helps!
By Rajib Singha
Published: 3/5/2011
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