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Diaper Rash Treatment

Protecting the Skin When Treating Diaper Rash

Minimizing exposure to irritants and decreasing the moist environment will help the skin to heal. You should also apply a diaper rash cream or ointment after each diaper change until the rash clears up.
 
These products provide a moisture barrier, allowing the skin to heal more quickly. They also prevent stool and urine from coming in contact with the healing skin and minimize friction.
 
Many different choices are available without a prescription. Look for one that has a barrier product either within the cream or ointment (such as with petroleum jelly or lanolin) or within the active ingredients (such as zinc oxide). Some brands include Desitin®, Triple Paste®, A&D Ointment®, Balmex®, Aquaphor®, and Vaseline®.
 
If these do not work, talk to your pharmacist or healthcare provider about other choices. Often, your pharmacist can mix different ingredients to create a "custom" cream.
 
Creams or ointments for diaper rash should be applied thickly over the affected area. You don't need to get all the previous application off before putting on the new layer. Just clean off the soiled outer layer. The less rubbing and irritating, the better. Be thorough but gentle.
 
(Click Diaper Rash Creams and Ointments for more information, including options for when the rash just does not seem to be getting better).
 

What If These Don't Work?

If the diaper rash treatment you are using does not help, or if your baby's rash has gotten infected, it will likely not get better by following these tips alone. Speak to your child's healthcare provider about other treatment options available. He or she may give you a prescription-strength cream to help the healing process.
 
You should not use any powders that contain talc or cornstarch. Also, do not use any creams with boric acid, camphor, or phenol.
 
A Dose of Reassurance for Parents of Picky Eaters

Diaper Rash Information

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