Health Alert: Preventing diaper rash

NATIONAL - We've all seen the tears and heard the wail when a baby is suffering from diaper rash. But these days, that suffering is happening less and less, thanks to new technology in the diaper business.

With four children, Amber Isaksen has changed her fair share of diapers, and been lucky when it comes to diaper rash. "Overall, we haven't had too many problems with it."

But when a rash has appeared, it's been severe. Isaksen says, "It was very red and very raw."

Luckily, technology has helped cut down on diaper rash. Dr. David Goo says, "The breathable diapers are the best because they allow air to the skin and really, that's the main cure for diaper rash, is allowing air to the skin."

Super-absorbent diapers with cellulose gel make a huge difference, too. Dr. Goo says, "They just suck away all the moisture and so there's less moisture that's sitting up against the skin."

The moisture is what causes the irritation, so here's one you should avoid, according to Dr. Goo. "Studies have looked at diaper rash and the worst offenders are the cloth diaper with the plastic pants on it that's left on for a long time."

If you still prefer cloth, you must be vigilant. Dr. Goo says they're fine, "as long as they're changed rapidly and you know, sanitized correctly."

Barrier creams and ointments aren't necessarily needed for prevention, but they can help treat a rash.

Another option is to let the baby go without a diaper to let things air out. However, Dr. Goo warns "if the skin is bleeding, if it's open, if you see areas of pus or blisters on the skin" then see a doctor because an over the counter cream just won't "cover" it.

If the rash is redder than a regular rash, it may be a yeast infection. That can be treated at home with an anti-inflammatory cream or fungal cream, such as one percent hydrocortisone. If that doesn't help within a day or two at the most, see the doctor.

Posted by Chantelle Janelle