Diaper Rashes In Babies And Infants

Diaper rash can be caused by a burning of the skin from the ammonia in the urine or acidity of the stool. The majority of diaper rashes are just in the contact-surfaces where the stool or urine has had contact with the skin. Barrier creams work great to prevent the stool or urine from having direct contact with the skin. Use the white diaper creams with zinc and apply it during every diaper change. Apply generously, like frosting.

The second most common rash is from yeast or Candida. Little babies may also have thrush (white on the gums, cheeks, and tongue). The Candida rash is typically in the creases of the thighs, around the anus, and for girls, also in the vaginal creases. I recommend that you alternate two different anti-fungal creams, one each diaper change. This will help to avoid the resistance that some yeast has developed to anti-fungals.

The final form of diaper rash is very rare. This is a peri-anal strep infection, and occurs in less than 1% of diaper rashes. Just like you can get strep throat, babies on rare occasions can get a strep infection around their anus. This rash tends to be beefy-red and will require a visit to your doctor for antibiotics.

Dr. Paul


  • AD

    Good information… Don’t forget to warn about chemical burns that some babies get from the SAP gel and all the other toxic chemicals in there…I mostly cloth diapered due to the fact that my littles seemed to get that every time they wore pampers or huggies. The best disposable I have found are “Honest Diapers” as they have very low SAP gel and no other toxic chemicals added…

  • How can we made rash cream that is used for relief from diaper rash?

    • Paul Thomas, M.D.

      There are many good diaper rash creams available at your local market. I would start by looking there. It would be far more cost effective and just as good as any home remedies.

  • Ariel

    Can you please comment on the natural diaper balms available on the market? We have tried three things for our son’s rash: 1. coconut oil (alone), 2. Earth Mama Angel Baby (first two ingredients are olive oil and shea butter), and 3. Moon Valley Organic Baby Bum Balm (first two ingredients are safflower oil and beeswax). None of these are white in color and I wonder if these qualify as ‘barrier creams’ or if we should consider switching to a standard rash treatment. Not asking for you to comment on our child’s particular rash, just wondering about these natural balms in general.

    • Alex

      Our little one got chemical burns from the diapers themselves. It all went away when we switched to cloth. There are more non toxic options for disposable now though. Have you tried Honest Diapers?

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