Advice for new parents from dermatologists

Advice for new parents from dermatologists

First-time parents have quite the scare while they rush into the emergency room or call their doctors after-hours after they see odd rashes, suspicious crusting and bumps that appear on their newborn baby out of the blue, however, they are very common, easy to treat, and rarely mean anything is seriously wrong.

Kate Püttgen, M.D., Johns Hopkins Children's Center dermatologist, said:

"Neonatal rashes tend to develop suddenly and have a dramatic appearance that can easily frighten a rookie parent, but luckily most of these are completely benign."

In order to better inform new parents of their baby's skin care and the most common skin problems newborns have, Püttgen offers expertise not only as a pediatric dermatologist, but as a mother as well.

What is Cradle Cap?

Cradle cap is neonatal dandruff, which is also referred to as seborrheic dermatitis. Although the cause is not completely known, it is extremely common and tends to occur in areas high in oil glands within the first three months of the child's life.

This condition is very easy to take care of; most cases require only a gentle wash. Be sure to keep a close eye on it, but it should clear up on its own. The crusting can be cleared up faster by petroleum jelly or olive oil.

If you see that the crusting is not going away or it is getting worse, call your pediatrician. He may prescribe an anti fungal cream or shampoo.

What is Diaper Rash?

The red inflamed patches or bumps on a baby's buttocks and genital area are simply skin irritation, or a diaper rash, which can be caused by fungal infections or by exposure to stool and urine. A rash can also be caused, or worsened, by sweat, harsh soaps, moisture, or diapers that are too tight.

Be sure to change diapers often and as soon you think the baby has urinated or made a bowel movement in order to prevent diaper rashes from happening, or prevent existing rashes from getting worse.

Always wash your hands before and after changing a diaper and make sure the baby's skin is completely dry. It will also help if you apply petroleum jelly or zinc oxide-based cream with each diaper change.

Do NOT use talcum powder, perfumed baby wipes, or wipes containing alcohol.

A mild corticosteroid cream or anti fungal cream can make the rash disappear faster.

Keep a close eye on the rash. If it does not get better or is getting worse, call the pediatrician. Inform your doctor if the rash becomes oozy or if your infant has a fever, which means there is an infection. The balance between good and bad bacteria can be disrupted by babies taking antibiotics which causes a fungal infection and yeast overgrowth.

What is Erythema Toxicum?

Many newborns are affected by a benign condition called erythema toxicum in the first weeks of life, which gives the baby yellowish papules surrounded by red skin on the face and trunk, upper arms and thighs.

No treatment is normally needed for this rash because it will disappear on its own within a few weeks.

An exam by your doctor can confirm any signs of erythema toxicum.

What to Know About Baby's Skincare

According to Püttgen, the two most important rules of neonatal skincare are:
  • Bland and simple. Always use fragrance-free, hypo-allergic products, because the baby's skin is very absorbent. The skin will become severely irritated if it comes in contact with perfumes and dyes; avoid them.
  • Less is more. Infants do not need an elaborate skin care regimen. In fact, they barely need any products. In order to protect the skin's natural oils, keep bathing to a minimum. Twice or three times a week is a good amount of bath time.
Püttgen explained how premature skin is extra-fragile and does not hold moisture well, and the skin needs special attention so it does not become thinner, breakage-prone, or drier. Petroleum jelly can help the skin hold the moisture in order to strengthen the skin's barrier function.

Another topic that parents seem to be confused about is sun protection. She said, "Parents know that sun protection is critical, yet many are hesitant to use sunscreens." Even though sun exposure is best to be avoided, if you are going to bring your baby out in the sun, the author has described ways to keep your baby safe.

  • Be sure to use clothing, hats, stroller covers and other physical barriers whenever your baby is outdoors.
  • Avoid sunscreens. Even though they are generally harmless, the Food and Drug Administration has yet to study its safety in babies under the age of 6 months.
  • If there is no way of avoiding the sun, use fragrance-free hypo-allergenic sunscreens that list zinc oxide and/or titanium dioxide as active ingredients, which block UV rays.

Oily skin care tips Q&A with a dermatologist ?? (Video Medical And Professional 2020).

Section Issues On Medicine: Medical practice