Diaper rash can make a baby miserable. And when your baby is miserable, so are you! Many diaper rash remedies are available on the market, but many of them quite expensive. In addition, some of them are ineffective, harsh, or may have long-term side effects.
You can find home remedies for diaper rash. Try these:
1. Air Time
Lack of circulation is a major contributor to diaper rash. After the morning diaper change, wash baby’s bottom with lukewarm water and pat dry with a very soft towel. Then, let baby be diaper-free for as long as possible. For young infants who can’t move around, lay them on an absorbent towel or hospital-style “chuck” (absorbent pads with plastic backing).
If baby is mobile, let him run around outside if weather permits. If weather does not permit, try some diaper-free time on a tile floor (watching carefully for falls!). Or you can give your mobile baby short, frequent air-out times throughout the day, always right after changing.
2. Frequent Changes
Make sure to change baby’s diaper often, at least every three hours. Middle-of-the-night changes may have to happen until the rash clears up.
3. Breast milk
If you are nursing or know someone who is and might have some to spare, you can put breast milk on baby’s bottom. Its antibacterial, antifungal properties are very helpful, and breast milk soothes skin. Apply it gently to baby’s clean, dry bottom.
4. Vinegar Rinse
If you use cloth diapers, add a cupful of white vinegar to the laundry and rinse the load twice. Alternatively, you can add the vinegar during the first rinse cycle.
Plain cornstarch can be applied to baby’s clean, dry bottom the way commercial baby powder is applied. Apply with each change.
Your kitchen cabinet may have some oils you can use. Coconut and olive oils can be effective against diaper rash. Coconut oil can be applied directly from the jar. Dust with cornstarch for extra protection. Olive oil should be mixed with water. In a blender or with a whisk, combine olive oil and water in a combination of 1/4 teaspoon water per tablespoon of olive oil. Blend until it is creamy and apply.
If you have an aloe plant, apply the gel right from the leaves of the plant. Split the succulent leaves lengthwise and scrape out the gel with a knife. You can sometimes get the gel commercially, but make sure it is pure aloe vera gel, not a product containing aloe.
Things to Avoid
- Commercial baby wipes can be harsh and irritating. Use warm, moist cloths instead.
- Harsh soaps can irritate baby’s skin. Instead, add a little baking soda to baby’s bath and rinse well.
- Diaper covers, especially plastic ones, decrease circulation and irritate the skin. Try wool diaper covers instead. Not only do they breathe, they also have antibacterial properties.
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