Although heat rash isn’t life-threatening, it can be very uncomfortable for your baby. Here are 6 things you need to know about baby heat rash:
1. What is heat rash?
Heat rash is a condition where the skin breaks out in tiny red bumps that itches. It usually occurs on clothed or folded parts of the body, such as the back, abdomen, back, upper chest, armpits, or groin.
2. What causes heat rash?
Heat rash occurs due to overheating. Babies can get a heat rash when they sweat too much, causing the ducts of the sweat glands to become blocked. As a result, the sweat leaks into surrounding tissues which leads to inflammation and irritation.
Babies are more prone to heat rashes as their pores are smaller, and more so if they are exposed to hot and humid conditions. However, baby heat rash also occurs during cold conditions when babies are dressed too warmly.
3. How to treat heat rash?
Heat rash will usually go off on its own in a few days once the skin is no longer overheated. Firstly, make sure your baby is always cool. It helps to put her in an air-conditioned room or shady area. Notice when she is sweating and dry it off with a wet towel or give her a shower. Lastly, make sure you dress her in light and comfortable clothing. Do not apply lotion on the rash as this would further block the pores. Instead, expose the affected area to air; let it breathe.
However, you will know the best treatment once you figure out what’s causing the heat rash. Are you dressing her with too many layers? Does the nursery trap heat at night? The key is to find out where the heat rash is occurring, and try to backtrack from there.
4. What if my baby scratches herself?
You can trim her fingernails or put on little socks on her hands especially at night. Most importantly, make sure your baby’s nursery has good air ventilation when she sleeps. Although tempting, do not pop your baby’s tiny bumps in order to get rid of them as this might leave the area prone to infection. Honestly, the best thing is to let your baby’s skin heal on its own.
If your baby is really in pain, you can apply some aloe vera on the affected area. When handling the aloe vera plant, be careful to extract only the non-toxic parts of the plant. If your are buying aloe vera gel from a drugstore, make sure to ask if it is baby-safe.
5. Should I take my baby to the doctor?
Usually, baby heat rash isn’t serious. However, if your baby’s heat rash does not go away in 3-4 days, or if it gets worse, you should ring your doctor. Most importantly, make sure your baby’s rash isn’t a symptom of something else, like an allergic reaction to a medication. You can also look for signs of something more serious going on, such as a fever, chills, and puss oozing from the little bumps.
To learn how to prevent baby heat rash, click here.