10 common skin rashes in children
A baby’s skin is considered the standard for softness and natural texture. You may see cosmetic products, mostly moisturisers and lotions, being advertised with the analogy that they make your skin as soft and natural as a baby’s. However, infants and small children are not exempt from skin conditions. Nearly 23.7% of children under the age of 3 years in India visit a healthcare provider for skin conditions. There are some common skin rashes in children that parents should look out for.
In this article, Dr Shreya Dubey, a leading paediatrician in Gurgaon, discusses some common skin conditions and rashes in children.
Common skin rashes in children
As a new parent, changes in your child’s skin can frighten you. It is, thus, important to learn about these skin conditions. While the range of skin rashes in children is varying, there are a few rashes that are more prevalent than others.
If you wondered that the onset of acne happens when you hit puberty, you may be wrong. Baby acne, also known as neonatal acne, is a common skin condition affecting thousands of babies worldwide. As the name denotes, it is a condition in which pimp, white and red spots on skin begin to appear.
Baby acne are common baby rashes that mostly affect the child’s forehead and cheeks. This acne appears within the first month of birth and is associated with maternal hormones during pregnancy.
Treatment: Baby acne is not a frightening condition. It does not cause long-term effects and usually subsides on its own after the first one or two months. If your baby’s skin does not improve after a few months, you should consult your healthcare provider.
One of the most common skin rashes in children and babies is the cradle cap. In this condition, you will notice a thick and crusty layer (often yellow in colour) on the scalp of your child’s head.
While a cradle cap usually appears on the head, it can also be found behind the ears.
Treatment: Cradle cap is normally a harmless skin condition.It disappears on its own within a few months. You should ensure to maintain your baby’s hygiene for quick relief from the cradle cap. You should brush, hydrate and wash your baby’s hair routinely. Seek medical help if the condition persists or spreads to your baby’s face or other parts.
If babies could communicate as well as adults, they would agree how common and aggravating diaper rashes are. As the name denotes, a diaper rash is one of the common rashes in children caused by excessive moisture or prolonged contact with feces or urine in the diaper.
A diaper rash appears in the form of redness in your baby’s bottoms or genital area.
Treatment: A diaper rash can be prevented and easily managed by a routine hygiene check. You should make sure to change your baby’s nappies every 2-3 hours. Use diaper rash oil and creams.
Another condition common in infants and young children is eczema. It is characterised by dry and scaly patches on the skin. Baby eczema is among the commonest rashes in children. It is a chronic condition that often causes itching. Dust and heat can cause eczema in children.
Treatment: You should keep your baby clean and neat by bathing him every second or third day. If the rashes become severe, you should make sure to consult your doctor.
Baby’s skin tends to be extraordinarily sensitive. Their skin can become more dry due to a lack of moisturising oil created by the baby. Dry skin is a major factor leading to viral rashes in children.
Treatment: Skin dryness can be treated simply by hydrating your skin. You can use moisturisers and lotions specifically made for babies to keep your baby’s skin healthy.
Heat rash toddler can also lead to skin conditions in children. A harsh humid weather or excessive layers of clothing can trigger a heat rash. Heat rashes appear in the form of bright red spots on skin and not usually harmless.
Treatment: Heat rashes usually do not persist for long. They tend to disappear on their own in due time and care. Shifting your baby to a cooler environment can help in reducing this rash.
Milia is among the common skin rashes in children that appears on the nose, cheeks and chin. This condition is mostly present by birth and is not harmful for the baby.
Treatment: You can wash your baby’s face with clean water and soap to decrease the white bumps caused by milia. If the condition persists or aggravates, you should consult your healthcare provider.
Fifth disease also known as ‘slapped cheek disease’ is among the popular skin conditions in children. It is a result of a viral illness. Fifth disease is characterised by redness on the cheeks accompanied by low-grade fever and cold-like symptoms.
Treatment: There is no home remedy you can use for fifth disease. If your child develops a skin rash along with fever, you should make sure to take him to the medical doctor.
A drool rash is caused by the constant presence of saliva on your baby’s face. It usually appears during the teething phase of your child when your little one is growing milk teeth. A drool rash occurs on the mouth and is characterised by redness.
Treatment: You should ensure that your baby’s face is clear of saliva at most times. Do not scrub your infant’s mouth, instead pat dry it.
Hives is another common skin rash in children. It appears in the form of red or white bumpy patches of skin. These patches can sometimes be painful and itchy. However, hives in children is an acute illness and should not be a reason for panic.
Treatment: Your healthcare provider will be able to offer relevant medicines for the treatment of hives.
Tips to prevent common skin rashes in children
Most skin rashes can be avoided or reduced if you provide a healthy and clean environment for your baby. Here are some expert-approved tips on how to get rid of skin rashes in children.
- Change your baby’s diaper frequently
- Keep their skin clean and dry
- Hydrate your baby’s skin if you inspect dryness
- Do not use scented cosmetics on their skin
- Track the particles and foods your child is allergic to
- Use lotions and soaps specifically designed for children
The concluding note
The prevalence of common skin rashes in children is considerably high. Little kids have sensitive skin that can be easily affected by irritants. Parents should not be alarmed if they suspect a small change in their child’s skin. Make sure to practice the above-given tips on how to get rid of skin rashes in children and consult your doctor for regular health checkups of your child.
For more information on child health, book an appointment with Dr Shreya Dubey at the CK Birla Hospital.
Ques: How can you tell if a rash is serious?
Ans: You can tell if a skin rash is serious if:
- It does not disappear within a week
- If its redness increases
- If it becomes swollen
- If it appears wet
Ques: What kind of rashes are painful?
Ans: Most rashes in children are not painful. However, some kinds such as diaper rash, baby eczema, heat rash, fifth disease and hives can cause mild discomfort and pain.
Ques: When should I worry about rashes on my child?
Ans: If your child’s rashes are serious and associated with symptoms such as fever and painful urination, you should consult a doctor urgently.
Ques: What should I do if my child has a rash?
Ans: The action steps depend on the severity of the rashes. If your child’s rash is not severe, you can simply pat a wet cloth on it to soothe pain and itching.
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