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Teething is a difficult time for both babies and their parents. Your baby will cry, be irritable and downright miserable at all sometimes. As if all of that is not enough, your baby will also drool plenty which will cause some uncomfortable rashes on their face and possibly even on their bums.
This doesn’t mean that you are a bad parent or not taking good care of their hygiene – in fact, this is completely normal.
The teething will stop and your baby will go back to being that cute bundle of joy. In the meantime, learn how to help them get some much needed relief.
How to Treat Teething Rash
Drooling is often an inevitable side effect of teething. It can also be an inevitable part of being a baby, unrelated to the teething process. While drool may be caught with a bib & wiping, prolonged exposure to drool can lead to skin rashes.
Why does this happen?
Well, the presence of saliva on your baby’s skin can cause irritation. It often appears:
- Around the mouth
A drool rash appears as a flat or raised patch of red skin with bumps. It can look chapped or dry too. It can happen because of the drooling caused by teething and it can also happen because of the use of a pacifier or if there’s food around your baby’s mouth for too long. It's common in early babies too, since they don't know how to control saliva and mouth functions.
Preventing it is often very difficult. For one, your baby will probably drool a lot and you can’t always wipe it away quickly. But, you can try and wipe every time you notice that the area around your baby’s mouth or neck is wet. A quick wipe while you're changing baby's diaper is a good way to stay on top of it.
Keep their skin clean and dry. Use a bib if they often drool enough to make their shirt damp. Change bibs often too.
But if the rash happens, here are some things that you can do:
Gently wash the rash areas twice a day with warm water and mild baby soap and pat it dry gently too.
Apply a thin coat of any ointment that you like, whether natural or store-bought
During bathing, use a mild baby wash without any scents. If you use lotion after, it should be gentle as well but use it only on your baby’s body, not the rash area.
Reduce irritants while your baby has a rash. Switch to fragrance-free detergents for your baby’s clothes. Avoid wearing perfumes or scented lotions.
Offer something cold for your baby to suck on because it can mildly numb the irritation of your baby’s gums. Don’t worry if they don’t accept the first thing you offer. Try with different things like teething rings, washcloths or even their favorite plush toys, if that’s what they’ve been chewing on so far.
In most cases, you won’t have to go to the doctor for this. However, it’s best to consult a professional if:
- The rash is cracked and weepy –
- You can see that your baby is in constant pain; not playing, smiling, laughing or eating as much
- If it doesn’t improve after a week of efforts
- Baby seems to be in distress
The doctor may be able to prescribe something more powerful that will make your baby’s teething rash disappear quickly.
Can Teething Cause Rash on Baby’s Bottom?
Teething can be challenging. During this time, your baby will be irritable and not like usual. There will be many other symptoms like:
- Sore gums, red places where the tooth is coming out
- Flushed cheeks
- More drooling
- Excessively chewing items
- More fretful and harder to console
While all of these symptoms are normal, teething doesn’t necessarily mean that your baby will get a diaper rash.
However, one of the symptoms of teething is diarrhea – and all parents know that this often means diaper rash.
Here’s how to protect your baby from the diaper rash caused by teething:
Change their diaper as soon as they poop and use a protective ointment of your choice
You should be changing their diapers five to seven times a day. Rashes can benefit from fresh air, so try to give them some diaper free time – for example, when you change them, play with them for 15 to 20 minutes before putting on the next diaper. Lay down a spare towel or disposable tablecloth if you're worried about accidents!
What are the Best Natural Ointments for Diaper & Teething Rash?
Diaper and teething rashes are quite normal and common. You will notice red areas in the areas where the diaper is or in the area around your baby’s mouth. There is no reason to worry about this, however. Often, it will go away after a day or two.
But this doesn’t mean that you should completely let it go. There are some natural, healthy options that you can try to make it better.
Here are some of them:
Coconut Oil – This is definitely one of the most popular skin remedies for grownups and it can also be great for babies if you apply it in thin coat to your baby’s rash area
Vinegar – While this word itself in relation to their baby can scare some parents away, vinegar is an effective tool against rashes of all sorts. Mix one teaspoon of vinegar with a cup of water and wipe your baby’s bottom with this mixture. You can also use it mixed with water to rinse your reusable diapers
Breast Milk – If your baby is breastfeeding and you have plenty of milk, apply a few drops to the affected area and let it air dry.
Cornstarch – Wash your baby’s affected area with some lukewarm water and then let dry naturally before applying some cornstarch powder to the area.
Petroleum Jelly – Wash the affected area and dry before applying a thin layer of petroleum jelly
Oatmeal – Oatmeal has the power to cleanse the skin and moisture it. Mix one teaspoon with bath water and bathe your baby in that.
Apple Cider Vinegar – Pour a cup of it into your baby’s bath water and wash your baby with that.
Chamomile Tea and Honey – Mix two cups of chamomile tea with one teaspoon of honey and spray it over the affected area daily.
Aloe Vera – If there’s more inflammation, add aloe vera gel to the area.
Baking Soda – Mix two tablespoons of baking soda with warm water and wash the area daily for quick healing
Yogurt – Apply organic yogurt to the affected area when there is inflammation
Epsom Salt – Mix half a cup of epsom salt with bath water and let your baby play and soak in it for 10 minutes and then bathe them.
Using Coconut Oil for Rashes
Coconut oil is a commonly used skin treatment for various conditions and good skin health. Using coconut oil can help prevent diaper rash and it keeps the skin safe from redness, irritation and so on. Coconut oil moisturizes the skin and heals it.
Coconut oil is safe for babies of all ages, specifically when used topically. Use small amounts, as coconut oil goes a long way.
Before using it, test it on a really small patch of your baby’s skin and monitor for any bad reactions or adverse effects. If everything is okay after a day, you can continue to use it.
The skin should be clean and dry before you apply coconut oil. The right amount is about a teaspoon. If it’s solid, you should melt it for a bit between your hands or put the jar in the warm water. Never use the microwave and make sure that it’s not too hot.
When you apply the coconut oil, allow it to dry completely before you put on a diaper or wipe the face with anything. Apply it several times during the day in the same manner.
Buy your coconut oil from a brand you trust and choose one without fragrance added.
When your baby is more than 6 months old, you can start adding some essential oils to the mix, like chamomile or lavender.
Coconut oil will make the rash go away in a few days but improvements will be felt and maybe visible after the first application of coconut oil.
Can You Use Witch Hazel on Babies?
Natural remedies are often neglected in favor of over the counter and prescribed medicines and ointments. However, they can often be much better for you.
Babies especially are often treated with harsh ointments for simple issues that a few drops of a natural ointment could help solve.
Diaper and teething rashes are quite common – and they can also be solved with some gentle natural medicine usage. Witch hazel is one of those natural medicines that you can use. A few drops of witch hazel extract diluted with water and gently applied can really help soothe a rash. You can also find an alcohol-free witch hazel toner and swab the affected area.
While you should definitely test this solution on a small patch of your baby’s skin and see how they react over the next day, if they feel fine and there are no adverse effects, you can use it for rashes. It’s generally safe, unless your baby shows any negative effects.
Do you have any tried and true tips for teething rashes? Feel free to share in the comments down below!