What is a Diaper Rash?
Diaper rash is a condition wherein the area where the diaper is placed becomes irritated enough to form red rashes. It is also called as napkin rash, nappy rash, or medically as irritant diaper dermatitis. Although the term seems to mean that the diaper itself causes the rashes, the truth is, it is the dirty contents of the diaper that causes the ailment.
This condition is actually a variation of contact dermatitis. It can be caused by bacteria or fungi. The proliferation of these pathogens is especially promoted by breaks in the skin caused by constant moisture often due to not replacing the diapers when wet.
What Causes a Diaper Rash?
A diaper rash may be caused by irritation to a certain material or situation. A common cause of diaper rash is prolonged exposure to wetness, especially urine and feces. This wetness results to the breaking down of the stratum corneum which is the outermost layer of the skin. As a result, rashes appear over the affected part as an indicator of the body’s reaction to a prolonged exposure to the irritating matter.
Other causes of diaper rash are the following:
- Due to urine. Because urine can soften the skin, the result is an increased susceptibility to injuries due to friction. As such, when the diaper area frequently rubs off with urine, the result is a wearing off of the skin. Another way by which urine can cause diaper rash is that it can affect the pH level of the skin, which is known for contributing to the appearance of diaper rashes. Remember that urine has an acidic pH which can easily erode the skin.
- As an effect of the baby’s diet. Because feces is one of the factors that cause diaper rash, the enzymes found in feces is directly linked to the food taken by the baby. Most episodes of diaper rash were noted when an infant is making a change from liquid to solid foods, such as from milk to cereal.
Home Remedies for Diaper Rash
The following home remedies can be used to treat diaper rash:
- The best treatment plan is, of course, to prevent diaper rash by keeping the baby or the patient clean at all times. Immediately replace diapers when wet.
- Baking soda. Mix 2 tbsp baking soda in the baby’s bath. Soak the baby into this water for about 10 minutes a day.
- Oatmeal. This can also be added into the baby’s bath.