A new addition to the family is always a cause for joy and celebration. We know that some parents may worry more than others, especially if it’s their first. Now that the baby is here, there may be some unforeseen, but common, skin issues appearing. Some have no need for concern, but others do require your attention. Sometimes simple treatments do the trick, and others require a trip to the dermatologist. If one of the following skin issues does appear, here is how to care for your bundle of joy.
Diaper rash is very common for newborns and infants. The rash is caused by any number of things including excessive contact with fabrics, adhesives, urine, stool or with moisture even. You may notice your baby seems more uncomfortable or fussy than usual. If your baby has the red, scaly patches of diaper rash, it can be easily managed.
To prevent this rash, make sure you are frequently changing their diaper after they’ve soiled it. Clean areas covered by the diaper during each change. It’s wise to add a barrier cream or moisturizer so your baby’s skin doesn’t become dry with the wiping. If the rash persists, there are many effective, over-the-counter creams to heal and soothe the rash.
Seborrheic dermatitis, or cradle cap, appears as small, oily flakes on a newborn’s scalp. This is often caused by excessive oil production around the hair follicles. It is no cause for concern as it can naturally resolve itself.
However, there are simple treatments to help care for the affected areas and resolve cradle cap more quickly. By using a gentle, infant shampoo, the flakes can be loosened and fall off. A primary care physician can prescribe a medicated shampoo if symptoms persist. It is important to make note of the appearance of cradle cap, as it may be an indication of atopic eczema.
If you are noticing rough, dry skin with a red color on your newborn’s cheeks, elbows or knees, it’s possible they have atopic eczema. There is no known cause for eczema, although it may stem from genetics. Eczema can be triggered by a number of things like soaps, detergents, high temperatures or dust mites. The condition may only remain through infancy or can occur throughout the newborn’s lifetime.
Eczema is extremely common and treatable, although it is not curable. For your baby, use a gentle, sensitive-skin bath soap and be sure to bathe them in cool or lukewarm water. Gently pat them dry and apply a gentle moisturizer to soothe the skin. Finally, if the symptoms persist, visit a dermatologist. They can prescribe a safe steroid to apply during a flare-up and help monitor the condition for the future.
This is a type of birthmark that usually appears as a bright red, rubbery raised nodule, commonly on the face, neck or chest. Hemangiomas are actually a collection of blood vessels that have reached the skin’s surface. While a hemangioma may be present at birth, they often appear in the weeks following and grow in size.
Hemangiomas should not be a cause for concern and will reduce in size, eventually disappearing over time. However, if the birthmark is near the eyes or ears, it is important for a primary care physician or dermatologist to examine it and determine if it may impact your child’s vision or hearing. In this case, dermatologists can use laser treatments to shrink the hemangioma and protect your baby’s hearing or vision.
It is important to be proactive in treating conditions that may appear with your newborn. If you feel unsure about symptoms of your child, bring them to be examined by your dermatologist or primary care physician. If your newborn suffers from atopic eczema or has a hemangioma, the experienced dermatologists at Knoxville Dermatology Group are ready to help. Visit our website or give us a call to schedule an appointment at 865-690-9467.