Almost every baby will develop a diaper rash at least once, especially when they are learning to eat solid foods and to sit. While the condition is more treatable with preventive rather than curative measures, it is often not as a result of negligence on the part of the parents.
Diaper rash presents with signs similar to those of atopic dermatitis. They include skin redness, inflammation and bumps. There may be skin dryness or scaling. Your baby may get uncomfortable when their diaper area is touched. When yeast infection is involved, a bold red rash with defined borders and red bumps on raised skin areas appears.
Most babies are able to recover at home with natural remedies for diaper rash. This article focuses on how to treat diaper rash with natural remedies like cornstarch, oatmeal, breast milk, baking soda and others.
How to treat diaper rash with a natural remedy
There are over 25 natural remedies that can be used to treat diaper rash. It may therefore prove helpful to learn how to treat diaper rash with a natural remedy.
Every natural remedy for diaper rash has specific instructions on how it should be used. You can consider checking for directions on how to use in more than one source. Below is a list of commonly used natural remedies for diaper rash:
- Baking soda
- Oatmeal baths
- Essential oils
- Apple cider vinegar
- Olive oil
- Aloe vera
- Breast milk
- Shea butter
- Petroleum jelly
- Epsom salt or sea salt
- Warm bath
- Grape seed extract
Some of these natural remedies work best when used in combinations. For example, a combination of baking soda, lard and aloe vera works better than any of the remedies used on its own. Shea butter on the other hand has better results when made into a homemade diaper rash cream with honey, beeswax and maybe some breast milk. Like always, essential oils should be diluted with carrier oil to reduce concentration. Both coconut oil and olive oil are good examples of carrier oils. A natural remedy for diaper rash such as baking soda or cornstarch can be used on its own or in combinations.
How to use cornstarch for diaper rash treatment
Cornstarch is a common ingredient in baby diaper rash powders. It works by reducing friction and removing moisture in the diaper area. Baby diaper rash powders that contain talc are associated with breathing problems. A better approach is to use cornstarch for diaper rash treatment. Cornstarch has larger particles than talc and therefore less airborne. Is cornstarch good for diaper rash? It remains debatable whether cornstarch actually promotes a quicker recovery from diaper rash. The most it does is reduce moisture content and friction. Below are the various ways how to use cornstarch for diaper rash treatment.
This is perhaps the easiest method. You will need a clean piece of cloth, 1 cup warm water and 3 tablespoons of pure cornstarch.
- Begin with cleaning your baby’s diaper area with the piece of cloth
- Pat dry but preferably allow some minutes to air dry
- Sprinkle the cornstarch on affected area
- Leave for 5 minutes
- Place a clean diaper
- Repeat three times a day
Use with coconut oil:
Coconut oil is an antimicrobial. It is also used to promote both skin hydration and healing. The oil contains lauric acid that helps control yeast overgrowth.
- You will need ¾ cup cornstarch, ¾ cup coconut oil and a capsule of vitamin E.
- Start by adding cornstarch to coconut oil. You can warm the coconut oil for a minute before adding cornstarch
- Open the vitamin E capsule to release the liquid into the cornstarch mixture
- By now, the ingredients will have formed a paste. Apply the paste directly to affected areas
- Leave for 15 minutes before rinsing with warm water
- Repeat two times a day
Use with Vaseline petroleum jelly:
After zinc oxide, petroleum jelly is the other very common ingredient in diaper rash creams. Petroleum jelly provides a protective layer between baby’s skin and diaper waste.
- You will need 1 piece of cloth, 1 tablespoon of Vaseline and 2 tablespoons cornstarch
- Melt the Vaseline petroleum jelly by heating it for 10 seconds in a microwave-safe bowl
- Add cornstarch to the Vaseline
- the two should form a thick paste
- apply the paste directly to affected areas
- leave for 10 minutes before wiping it off with a warm piece of cloth
- repeat 2 times a day until the rash is gone
How to use baking soda as a natural remedy for diaper rash
Baking soda can either be used directly or in baths. To use directly, make a paste with water and apply directly. Leave it for about 10 minutes before rinsing with water and patting dry. The more practical method to use the remedy is adding it to bath water. Baking soda is known to promote skin hydration. It also makes it impossible for yeast and bacteria to proliferate.
Overuse of baking soda can lead to skin dryness. Avoid treatment with the remedy for more than 3 times a day. Also, ensure not to soak in baking soda bath for more than 20 minutes. Use on broken skin is advised against. See diaper rash blisters pictures to understand the different states in which diaper rash can present.
Breast milk as a natural remedy for diaper rash
Most mothers have been introduced by their doctors to some benefits of breast milk to baby’s health, both internal and external. Breast milk is the natural remedy all mothers carry with them but may not realize its benefits in regards to treating diaper rash. After bathing your baby, apply a generous amount of breast milk to affected areas.
It doesn’t matter if the milk is fresh or frozen. It contains different types of antibodies which help fight a really bad diaper rash. Since there are sugars in breast milk, it should not be used to treat diaper rash caused by yeast overgrowth. The sugars provide food for yeast and end up worsening rash. Diaper rash due to yeast overgrowth is sometimes caused by antibiotics. When baby or mother is on antibiotics, the medicines can end up killing good bacteria on skin or in intestines. Yeast overgrowth is characterized by diaper rash that looks like pimples and is a common cause of diaper rash on vagina.
As you may already know, breastfed babies develop stronger immunities. Mothers are always advised to do their best to ensure that their newborns, infants and babies get breastfed.
Oatmeal as a natural remedy for diaper rash
To use oatmeal as a natural remedy for diaper rash, you can purchase a commercial product or make it at home.
The best way to use oatmeal is in baths. Start by blending oatmeal to a fine powder that easily absorbs water. Sprinkle 1/3 cup oatmeal in a bath tub of running warm water. Stir or use your hand to feel for clumps. Once the water has turned milky, have your baby soak in for 15 minutes. Like baking soda, prolonged use of oatmeal can cause skin dryness.
Which is the best natural remedy for diaper rash?
There are many remedies which may help with diaper rash at home. In fact, foods such as rice and bananas which help stop diarrhea can also be used as part of treatment.
The most important thing is to know how to use a particular home remedy. For instance, essential oils can be used on bleeding severe rash while apple cider vinegar should not. Breast milk is a more considerable option for diaper rash in a newborn than baking soda is. If not certain, you can try over the counter options such as Maalox for diaper rash.
Other than treatment, preventive measures are of importance when it comes to diaper rash management. Most babies develop diaper rash due to wetness in the diaper region. This can be avoided by ensuring to change your baby after every two hours. Washing your hands before and after diaper changes helps prevent spread of strep diaper rash contagious infection.
If the rash doesn’t improve within 5 days, check with your doctor. Diaper rash caused by yeast overgrowth or bacterial infection requires medical diaper rash treatment for babies.
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