At-Home Help for Diaper Rashesby Elizabeth MacDonald
Just when you think you’re getting the hang of parenting a newborn down, you go to change a diaper and find a red bottomed-baby! Up to 35% of all babies suffer from a sore bottom due to diaper rash, and as a parent, it is painful to watch.
The best thing you can do is act on a rash before it becomes bad. A little redness means something is going on. There can be many reasons, and it’s not always easy to get to the ‘bottom’ of it, but the faster you act, the better. It’s important to note the difference between a diaper rash and an allergy ring.
An allergy ring is redness around the anus that can begin as mild and worsen into blisters as it expands. It is caused by a food intolerance within the formula or breastmilk. An elimination diet can help you figure out exactly what the trigger food(s) may be.
While food intolerances can lead to rashes, it is also likely that a diaper rash is caused by the diaper itself, a reaction to the chemicals and fragrances in the diaper, diarrhea, sitting in a wet diaper overnight, chaffing, a bacterial infection, or a yeast infection.
A yeast infection can be due to thrush or a reaction after a round of antibiotics. Rashes caused by infections are typically more intense, present faster and more raw than a common diaper rash, and can take a prolonged period of time to treat.
Natural Diaper Rash Treatments You Can Do At Home
Conventional treatments for diaper rash contain harmful ingredients like parabens and are usually made with petroleum, so they’re not sustainable or eco-friendly. Petroleum products can also make the skin actually dry out more and are linked to chronic health issues. There are several natural options that you can choose from when it comes to treating your baby’s tushie at home. Do not try all of them at once, instead, start with one and go from there.
Naked Time and New Diapers
You want the skin to breathe. Set a waterproof mat down and let that bottom air out for as long as possible (Bonus points if you can do this out in the sun.) Perhaps the source of the rash is the diaper brand you are using. Consider swapping brands to a chemical-free version, or trying cloth diapers. If you are currently using cloth diapers, you may not be getting the diapers 100% clean. Try stripping your diapers in boiling water or switching laundry detergents.
Hand express some breastmilk directly on the rash and let the area air dry. If yeast is your culprit, breastmilk may inflame the area, so keep an eye out for worsening.
Coconut oil is anti-fungal and antimicrobial and provides a barrier if the rash is caused by moisture.
Olive oil is great for moisturizing the skin and creating a barrier.
Apple Cider Vinegar
A few tablespoons of raw ACV in a warm bath may clear the rash up; if so, your baby’s urine could be too alkaline and causing the reaction on the skin.
Acidic urine or poop can cause diaper rash, and a baking soda bath can help neutralize the area.
Corn Starch Paste
Mix organic corn starch and coconut oil together and use it at a diaper paste.
Combine olive oil, shea butter, coconut oil, and zinc oxide for a DIY diaper cream to use in between changes.
Fresh aloe can soothe the area if it severely inflamed.
There are countless other wives’ tale remedies you can try, but these options tend to have great success!