What is contact dermatitis? Is it the same as diaper rash?
Contact dermatitis is a term that refers to various types of skin reactions (redness, rashes, itching) generally caused by an irritant or allergic reaction.
Diaper rash, a type of contact dermatitis that's often referred to as diaper dermatitis, is kind of an umbrella term for the many irritations a baby might experience. As careful as you are to change your baby's diaper, this is one thing that most babies will experience at some time. (Click here for other common baby and toddler skin conditions.)
Diaper Rash Symptoms and Causes
Diaper rashes can be caused by frequent stooling, wetness, irritants, friction (tight diaper), infections (the most common one being yeast), psoriasis (more uncommon), or allergies. The baby's bottom will usually be reddened and may cause her to be fussy.
Diaper rash is most common between 8 and 10 months of age, though it can occur at any age. A diaper rash that is a result of yeast can happen due to taking antibiotics, having frequent loose stools, or possibly after baby starts eating solid foods. Breastfed babies typically have fewer yeast-related diaper rashes than formula-fed babies.
Diaper Rash Treatments
To cope with a diaper rash, first check with your pediatrician to determine the cause. Then:
- Change diapers frequently
- Expose diaper area to air
- Use ointment or cream as suggested by your pediatrician (the type will vary based on the cause of the rash)