As a parent, occasional mild diaper rashes are inevitable. Generally caused by moisture trapped between the skin and the diaper, diaper rashes can rear their heads after long car trips, a change in baby’s diet or even when it’s time to move up in diaper size (Side note: Did you know that most diaper brands have indicators on the front panel where the tabs should sit? If you have to pull to meet the tab to the indicator, it’s time to move up a size!).
The best way to treat a diaper rash is to change baby’s diaper as soon as it’s wet or soiled. Many brands of diapers have a wetness indicator strip that runs down the middle of the diaper so you know whether or not the diaper is wet. This indicator strip can also be helpful if diapers have gotten accidently wet (In the rain or at the pool) and may no longer be absorbent.
When baby is experiencing a diaper rash, the goal is to keep baby’s skin as clean and dry as possible. During the diaper change, rinse baby with warm water (As opposed to rubbing with wipe) and gently pat to dry. If using wipes, try to dab the soiled area and make sure the wipe is fragrance-free. A barrier cream can also help keep the baby dry between diaper changes.
If baby is experiencing moderate-to-sever symptoms of diaper rash, including but not necessarily limited to a broad rash, bumps which may contain fluid and/or a fever, contact your pediatrician.
According to the National Diaper Bank Network, 1 in 3 families in the United States are experiencing diaper need. This need can make a common ailment such as a mild diaper rash become a significant issue. A lack of diapers can mean going longer stretches without changing diapers. These longer stretches can make a diaper rash that starts out as treatable at home much worse with consequences for children that include rehospitalization. The Diaper Bank of Minnesota works to connect Twin Cities families with the diapers they need to keep their babies clean and dry.