What can I do if my baby gets diaper rash?

If your baby gets a diaper rash, it is important to keep the area as clean and dry as possible. Change wet or soiled diapers right away. This helps cut down how much moisture is on the skin.

Gently clean the diaper area with water and a soft washcloth. Disposable diaper wipes may also be used. Avoid wipes that contain alcohol and fragrance. Use soap and water only if the stool does not come off easily. If the rash is severe, use a squirt bottle of water so you can clean and rinse without rubbing.

Pat dry; do not rub. Allow the area to air-dry fully.

Apply a thick layer of protective ointment or cream (such as one that contains zinc oxide or petroleum jelly). These ointments are usually thick and do not have to be completely removed at the next diaper change. Remember, heavy scrubbing or rubbing will only damage the skin more.

Do not make the diaper too tight, especially overnight. Keep the diaper loose so that the wet and soiled parts do not rub against the skin as much.

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