Several decades ago, diapers / nappies were made of cloth, then came the disposable ones to conquer the baby bottoms. By far, disposable diaper is the most innovative solution in child care. And, one cannot deny its consequent role in women empowerment 😊😊. However, the flip side of it is the diaper rashes, medically known as diaper dermatitis.
Parents and care givers universally worry about the diaper rash, which unfortunately is commonly seen in children below 2 years of age. You can easily recognize a rash when the skin under the diaper has become red and inflamed.
Common causes for diaper rashes:
- Delayed diaper change – When the diaper is on for a longer duration, it can cause rash when the baby’s delicate skin rubs against the wet / moist diaper lining. Hence, the diaper needs to be changed every time the baby poops. Else, every 3 – 4 hours, but no later. Diarrhea can create and aggravate the situation.
- Candida yeast infection – Candida is a yeast strain responsible for the candida yeast infection. Such rashes appear as small blisters / pimples, which you can differentiate from regular rashes.
Here is the most effective 2-step process to prevent a diaper rash:
- Cotton wipes – Wet couple of plain cotton balls in warm water to very gently wipe the baby bottom after each diaper change and pat dry the area. Use the store-bought baby wipes only sparingly! Over prolonged use, it could lead to skin irritation. .
- Coconut oil – Apply coconut oil generously in the diaper area specially around the bum hole. Allow a minimum of 15 minutes of air-time (more the better) before putting on the next diaper. If the oil has hardened in cold weather, you can warm it up a bit before applying.
Even before studies have proved that coconut oil has anti-fungal and anti-bacterial properties, it has been used topically and internally in my house and several households in India. It is also a natural moisturizer and does not have any reported adverse effect.
Remember, if you do this simple process after each diaper change, you can prevent diaper rashes.
What if the rashes have already appeared?
- If the baby has already got a diaper rash, provide ample air time (bare bottom).
- Prefer cloth diaper or plain cloth instead of the disposable ones; it provides adequate air circulation.
- Change the diaper as soon as it is soiled
- After each diaper change, wet couple of plain cotton balls, drip the water which allows to loosen the dirt.
- Wipe extra gently to avoid any irritation.
A word of caution, If the rashes do not start healing in 2-3 days with the above-mentioned steps, you can call your pediatrician. Through this blog, am sharing the tried and tested method that has worked for me each time.
How often should we change the diaper?
Ideally, if you spot poop, it is good to change the diaper immediately. Otherwise, change it every 3 hours but no later than 4 hours.
The good ol’ cloth is making a grand come back, apart from the regular ones, you can also find leak proof cloth diapers in the market. If your baby has sensitive skin, you can alternate between disposable ones and the cloth diaper type of your choice. Usually, the cloth diapers do not hold much and may need much frequent changes. When re-using cloth diapers, do ensure it is washed thoroughly with a disinfectant.
Happy Nappy, Baby!