What is diaper rash: What causes diaper rash?

Diaper rash is a skin condition affecting the area beneath and around an infant’s perineal area. Diaper rash is a common condition. It generally affects babies between the ages of 4 and 15 months. Diaper rash may become more noticeable when babies begin consuming solid foods.

Causes of Diaper Rash

Diaper rash is caused by an overgrowth of Candida. Candida is a yeast or fungus that is found in nearly every environment. Candida thrives in warm moist places, such as under a diaper. A diaper rash is likely to affect infants who are:

  • Exposed to antibiotics
  • Not clean and dry
  • Having diarrhea or frequent stools

Additional causes of diaper rash include:

  • Acids in stool
  • Ammonia overexposure
  • Wearing diapers that are too small
  • Allergic reactions to soaps

Symptoms of Diaper Rash

The most common symptoms of diaper rash include:

  • Expanding, bright red rash
  • Irritated, red scaly areas on the penis and scrotum
  • Irritated, red scaly areas on the vagina and labia
  • Pimples
  • Blisters
  • Ulcers
  • Pus-filled sores

Treating Diaper Rash

The very best method of treating diaper rash is to the keep the affected area clean and dry. This will also assist in preventing new infections.

  • Use proper hand washing before and after changing the diaper.
  • Use zinc oxide or a petroleum jelly product to prevent moisture from affecting the skin.
  • Never use baby wipes that contain alcohol or perfume.
  • Never use talcum powder
  • Change the baby’s diaper frequently.
  • Ensure the diaper isn’t too tight.
  • Use highly absorbent diapers to prevent moisture from getting to the skin.


Families using cloth diapers should be sure to:

  • Avoid using rubber pants over diapers. This traps moisture against the babies skin.
  • Avoid using fabric softeners or dryer sheets; these items can make rashes worse.
  • As cloth diapers are washed, it is vital to ensure that the soap is rinsed from the diapers. Soap can cause irritation with the baby’s skin.

Types of Medications for Diaper Rash

Topical skin creams are available to treat skin infections. These ointments will allow yeast infections to clear up. Some of the types of available creams are:

  • Nystatin
  • Miconazole
  • Clotrimazole
  • Ketaconazole

Sometimes topical corticosteroid cream can be utilized, but it may be beneficial to speak to a physician before trying this remedy.

Diaper Rash Prognosis

Diaper rash usually responds well to preventative measures and treatments.


Complications of Diaper Rash

Diaper rash complications can include:

  • Secondary infection

You should call your physician if the following issues occur:

  • Diaper rash worsens or doesn’t go away in 2-3 days
  • Diaper rash spreads to the across the body.
  • If pimples, blisters, large bumps, or pus-filled sores begin to appear.
  • If the infant develops a fever
  • If the baby is taking or exposed to antibiotics through breast milk and develops a rash that is red and has spots around the edges. This could be a yeast infection.
  • If an infant develops a rash within the first six weeks of life.


Diaper rash isn’t serious, but it can be painful and irritating. Diaper rash is easy treat.

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