Common rashes which may appear on babies are:
- The red, itchy patches on the skin, often seen on the baby’s chest, arms, legs, face, elbows, and behind the knees is called Eczema. It is caused by dry, sensitive skin, and sometimes allergies. This rash rarely appears after 5 days of age and most often disappears in 7 to 14 days. It is not worrisome.
- Prickly heat looks like small red bumps, mostly on areas of the baby’s body that tend to overheat and sweat, like the neck, diaper area, and armpits. Keeping the area dry will help. The baby should be dressed in loose-fitting clothes to avoid overheating.
- A fungal infection (candidiasis) can show up in different ways on the newborn baby. On the tongue, it is called thrush and looks like dried milk, which, unlike milk, cannot be scraped off. In the diaper area, candidiasis looks like an intense red rash, often with smaller bumps around the edges.
- Diaper rash or rash in the diaper area is a skin irritation caused by long term dampness or by urine and faeces touching the skin. It is most common in very young children but can occur at any age. Hot and humid weather can also cause diaper rash. The sweat is held within the skin and forms little red bumps or occasionally small blisters.
- Baby acne is caused by exposure to the mother’s hormones. Red bumps may appear on a newborn’s face.
- Hives and red welts appear to move around on the body. They differ in size and shape and may last for weeks.
If the rash looks like eczema, doctors normally advice use of a very gentle soap and skin moisturiser. The baby’s laundry must be done with a gentle detergent. Fabric softener must be avoided. In any case, the parents must consult the doctor.