5 Types of Common Newborn Rashes

Babies' skin is extremely sensitive. Therefore, newborn rashes are common during the first months of life. In this article, five of the most common ones.
5 Types of Common Newborn Rashes

Last update: 27 May, 2022

There are five types of common newborn rashes you should know about. They’re the following: diaper rash, baby acne, cradle cap, pediatric atopic dermatitis, and baby heat rash.

In this article, we’ll share their main characteristics, as well as the results of some recent studies. Also, we’ll share some simple and effective tips to prevent these skin problems.

Baby skin

Baby skin is characterized by being thinner and more prone to irritation and rashes. Thus, baby skin is very different from adult skin. It’s thinner, has less hair, produces less sweat, and, also, less sebaceous secretions. These differences are even more evident in premature babies.

The exposure of this delicate skin to the climate, bacteria, and possible contact injuries makes it very vulnerable in the first months of life. Therefore, it requires specific care at all times.

5 types of common newborn rashes

Most of the common newborn rashes aren’t serious. However, they often concern parents and make them very anxious. Therefore, we decided to detail the five most common ones in this article.

However, you should always see your doctor if you see any symptoms. This is because some important diseases can manifest symptoms through the skin. In these cases, early diagnosis is essential.

1. Diaper rash

A baby with diaper rash.

For starters, despite the great advances in diapers and absorbent materials, they can also irritate the baby’s skin, which is still in development. Moisture and contact with stools are factors that facilitate the appearance of diaper rash.

This recent study showed a relationship between most diaper rash cases and Candida albicans fungal infections. However, it also establishes that there are fewer cases in breastfed babies. Thus, it proposes this practice as a preventive measure.

2. Common newborn rashes: baby acne

Baby acne usually appears in the first month of life. In most cases, it’s a benign and temporary skin condition. However, some cases can manifest with a more serious hormonal imbalance.

This type of acne appears mostly on the forehead, nose, and cheeks and it can be related to the Malassezia fungus. To treat it, medical professionals prescribe a topical lotion. This condition usually disappears in a matter of weeks.

3. Cradle cap

A baby with cradle cap.
Although cradle cap usually disappears after the first months of life, you can apply creams to improve its symptoms.

Cradle cap is a seborrheic dermatitis that affects babies in their first three months of life. It causes oily and scaly scalp patches in the form of scabs, in addition to redness.

Cradle cap tends to disappear on its own. Nevertheless, you can also apply olive oil to the affected area to aid healing. However, some cases do require medical treatment.

Read on to learn more: Five Tips to Care for Your Baby’s Hair

4. Pediatric atopic dermatitis

One in ten breastfed babies can suffer from this disease during the first three months of life. This type of dermatitis usually appears on the cheeks, neck, and arms.

It’s caused by an alteration of the skin lipids, which hinders its protective function. Also, this alteration causes redness, itching, and dryness, which can make babies scratch and injure themselves.

Experts recommend using mild and natural soaps, as well as vegetable oils, which help to restore the skin’s protective barrier. In this case, you can also use olive or almond oil.

5. Baby heat rash, one of the common newborn rashes

Finally, this skin disorder affects 40% of babies. In most cases, it appears during the first month of life. However, it can appear at any age, especially in places with hot and humid climates.

It occurs when the pores of the sweat glands become blocked. This obstruction results in small red or white pimples, or even blisters, which appear on the face, neck, or back.

Baby heat rash usually disappears without the need for any specific treatment. However, you can aid healing by avoiding specific heat and choosing clothes from natural fibers, such as cotton.

In short, these are the common newborn rashes during the first months of life. To treat it, you must follow the prescribed indications step-by-step and, when in doubt, check with your doctor.

All cited sources were thoroughly reviewed by our team to ensure their quality, reliability, currency, and validity. The bibliography of this article was considered reliable and of academic or scientific accuracy.

This text is provided for informational purposes only and does not replace consultation with a professional. If in doubt, consult your specialist.