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Your Baby & Toddler - - Your Baby Files -

many com­mon child­hood ill­nesses un­der con­trol, they nev­er­the­less do oc­cur, so be vig­i­lant about the symptoms of things like measles and rubella just in case.

Know your rashes

We asked a der­ma­tol­o­gist in pri­vate prac­tice, Dr Robert Weiss, to de­scribe some of the more com­mon rashes found in ba­bies in the first year. Re­mem­ber to use a good bar­rier cream for ba­bies with ev­ery nappy change. This rash is most com­mon in new­borns but older ba­bies can get it too. It be­gins with a flaky rash on your baby’s scalp that can be­come yel­low, and crust-like scales that spread to the eye­brows when it’s se­vere. “Ar­eas un­der the neck or ax­il­lary folds (un­der the arms) are some­times in­volved. It does not itch nor do any harm to the baby,” says Dr Weiss. “But se­vere cases may need mild cor­ti­sone creams from your doc­tor. Post-in­flam­ma­tory light­en­ing of the skin may oc­cur in dark skinned ba­bies.”

Soften the scales with baby oil be­fore wash­ing the hair and brush well with a soft baby brush. Pick­ing at the crusts with your fin­ger­nails can cause sec­ondary in­fec­tions, so try not to do this. sweat­ing or not dry­ing baby well af­ter a bath. Al­ways be sure to dry your baby’s skin creases well, don’t use a tal­cum pow­der and soothe the rash with a regular bar­rier cream. If the rash be­comes worse, there may be a can­dida in­fec­tion and then gen­tian vi­o­let or an an­ti­fun­gal cream will help.

Com­monly re­ferred to as “slapped cheeks”, the devel­op­ment of this bright red rash oc­curs mostly over a baby’s cheeks a few days af­ter cold-like symptoms of a tem­per­a­ture and runny nose start. The rash is rather itchy and can spread all over the body (but never the palms and soles) and lasts for a few weeks. Dr Weiss de­scribes this rash as “a lace-like pat­tern on the trunk that may re­cur es­pe­cially af­ter a hot bath long af­ter A dry, scaly rash on your baby’s body can be caused by an al­lergy of some sort. But be­fore you go cut­ting out all kinds of foods from your baby’s solids diet – or yours, if you’re still breast­feed­ing ex­clu­sively, Dr Weiss re­as­sures us that baby al­ler­gies are rare. “Food al­ler­gies may oc­cur in atopic eczema in a few chil­dren un­der one year, but di­etary re­stric­tion should be avoided un­til de­fin­i­tive testing for al­ler­gies

This rash looks a lot like measles and a re­ac­tion to an­tibi­otics is the most com­mon cause. The rash goes away when the med­i­ca­tion is stopped.

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