Newborn babies have the most delicate skin, so imagine my worry when my daughter rapidly develops a newborn skin rash. Here is my infant’s experience with newborn skin rashes.
Annabelle never had skin problems as a baby, so when Ailey sprouted a couple of red spots near her eyes when she was four weeks old, I didn’t know what to make of them. She definitely had the beginning of a newborn rash.
Here is a photo of her first bump:
Totally nothing alarming right? But, the spots turned to bumps and the bumps multiplied overnight. Each day when we woke up, the rash seemed to be spreading all over her face and head.
The newborn rash began to spread.
The bumps spread from her eyes to her cheeks to her head, neck, and chest. Some of the bumps came to a head, while others remained flat. She developed yellow scales and crusted patches on her scalp as well.
Ailey never had have a fever or showed signs of discomfort, but the rash just kept spreading. Our poor beautiful baby was covered in something, but we just didn’t know what.
After four trips to the doctor’s office, we had an answer about the rash. Is it normal for newborns to have rashes?
The pediatrician could not believe Ailey had all three newborn rashes at once – cradle cap, baby acne, and eczema. She prescribed a few different creams (HydroCortisone 2.1 is one), plus a regimen for us to follow cleaning her skin. I highly recommend seeing a pediatrician if your baby’s skin looks as bad as Ailey’s skin. Breastmilk was suggested by friends to help clear up her rash, but it didn’t do anything! A pediatrician will know best!
Baby acne, eczema, and cradle cap joined forces to take over my newborn’s skin.
How do you treat newborn rashes?
I gently washed her face and neck with cool water and a clean washcloth (laundered in Free and Clear) a few times a day. It was important to keep her skin cool and dry, so if she became sweaty I had to cool her immediately. The heat made everything worse.
I sponge bathe her with water only every other day and use a tiny bit of Aveeno Eczema Therapy. I applied her prescription creams in the morning and at night. Slowly the rash disappeared on her face and neck, but it took at least a month for the baby acne to clear completely.
We used Selsun Blue on her scalp twice a week when she turned two months old to clear up the cradle cap. We noticed an improvement immediately. Soon, any rash on her head was a result of the eczema.
What if the newborn rash isn’t clearing up?
If your baby’s skin is not clearing up and he/she is breastfed, take a look at what you are eating. My diet makes her skin noticeably worse, so I first cut out dairy and now I’m not eating soy. We will have her blood tested for certain allergies at nine months because she also has gastrointestinal issues we would like to figure out.
Ailey didn’t really seem to mind the rash covering her face and scalp, but when any kind of heat caused her eczema to flare up in the creases of her skin, she seemed a bit irritated. Once she figured out how to use her hands, she started scratching frantically, leading her to cut herself. Since she doesn’t have a lot of hair, anyone can see the cuts on her scalp, so we’ve become used to the question: “WHAT HAPPENED TO HER HEAD?”
Baby rashes at six months old
At six-month-old, we are still dealing with eczema on a daily basis. The pediatrician says Ailey inherited Mommy’s sensitive skin. Whenever she is under the weather, eczema flares up on her arms and legs, especially in the creases of her limbs. I usually can tell she is coming down with a cold when her eczema seems to intensify. Her neck and scalp bother her the most and she scratches them like crazy. I apply Eucerin Baby Eczema for relief and also after she is bathed. I put lotion on her scalp when it seems dry and use the HydroCortisone on her neck when it’s raw.
Poor thing! I’m glad you finally figured out what was causing it! I hope she grows out of the excema. She is such a cutie!
Brenda Madrigal says
This is exactly what my granddaughter has now. She had one bump and then woke up the next day covered in bumps! We have since made several trips to her pediatrician and they say it’s just baby acne and it will go away on its own and there’s nothing we can give her for it. It looks bad and I just hope it doesn’t get any worse! This post really helped.
Maryanne Brown says
Can I ask what gastroentestinal issues your baby was/is having? Our 4 wk old baby was pooping so good at first and now she won’t go unless I help her witha q-tip or the whindy gas relief things. Pediatrician said she’s find and to let her go on her own but she still has yet to and we can tell she gets uncomfortable and I’m sure it doesn’t feel good. Thank you..
I know this is an old post, but thank you so much for sharing! My little one (who is my first baby) has this exact thing, but it took three doctors in the emergency room to identify it. My poor baby has it all on her scalp, face, neck, and back. I will have to try your skincare routine, which is similar to what the doctors suggested. I’m also super grateful that it gets better and clears up. I feel so bad for my baby girl.
My son had thr same thing it started around d 3 weeks little bumps that spread to his entire face with it he had cradle cap. I also used the hydrocortisone cream twice a day it cleared up when he was about 3 months sometimes he would get a flare up on his cheeks he is four now he doesnt have any eczema . My 2nd son now has the same issue.
Poor baby! :(. I’m going through this with my Grandson and I’m convinced he has all three also but they won’t admit it. It’s so frustrating. They tell us to take him outside but as soon as we do it looks much worse like what you’re saying.
Thank you so much for writing this! My baby’s skin looked exactly like this and his doctor kept telling me it was just baby acne. After much online research I found your blog post. Only today did she concede that it is actually a combination of three things (which I already knew from reading this). Luckily, we are already on the road to recovery by following your suggestions. I am convinced mom’s know best on these kinds of things! Thank you again!