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Home > Wellness > Health Library > Newborn Rashes and Skin Conditions
It’s very common for newborns to have rashes or other skin problems. Some
of them have long names that are hard to say and sound scary. But most will go
away on their own in a few days or weeks.
Here are some of the
things you may notice about your baby's skin.
Birthmarks come in different sizes, shapes, and
colors. Some are flat and some form a raised area on the skin. Most are
harmless and need no treatment. They often fade or disappear as a child grows
For more information, see the
Many newborn babies have a
yellow tint to their skin and the whites of their eyes. This is called
jaundice. In newborns, jaundice usually goes away on
its own within a week and does not need treatment. But if you are nursing, it
may be normal for your baby to have very mild jaundice throughout
breast-feeding. As long as your baby is getting enough milk and is fed often
(about 8 to 12 times every 24 hours), jaundice usually is not a problem.
In rare cases, jaundice gets worse and can cause brain damage. That is
why it is important to call your doctor if you notice signs that jaundice is
getting worse. If you think that your baby's skin or eyes are getting more
yellow, or if your baby is more tired or is not acting normally, call your
doctor. For more information, see the topic
Jaundice in Newborns.
Always call a doctor
if you have any concerns, if your baby is not acting normally, or if the skin
shows signs of being infected. The signs can include:
If you have concerns about what lotions or other
products to use on your baby's skin, talk to your baby's doctor at the next
visit. Not all newborn skin conditions need to be treated with lotions and
creams. You don’t usually need to use lotions and other products on healthy
The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) offers a
variety of educational materials about parenting,
general growth and development, immunizations, safety, disease prevention, and more. AAP guidelines for various conditions and links to other
organizations are also available.
This website is sponsored by the Nemours Foundation. It
has a wide range of information about children's health, from allergies and
diseases to normal growth and development (birth to adolescence). This website
offers separate areas for kids, teens, and parents, each providing
age-appropriate information that the child or parent can understand. You can
sign up to get weekly emails about your area of interest.
Other Works Consulted
American Academy of Pediatrics (2009). Your baby's first days. In SP Shelov et al., eds., Caring For Your Baby and Young Child: Birth to Age 5, 5th ed., pp. 125–130. New York: Bantam.
Chang MW, Orlow SJ (2008). Neonates and infants
section of Neonatal, pediatric, and adolescent dermatology. In K Wolff et al.,
eds., Fitzpatrick's Dermatology in General Medicine, 7th
ed., vol. 1, pp. 935–941. New York: McGraw-Hill.
Habif TP (2010). Vesicular and bullous diseases. In Clinical Dermatology: A Color Guide to Diagnosis and Therapy, 5th ed., pp. 635–670. Edinburgh: Mosby Elsevier.
Miller JH, Hebert AA (2010). Hemangiomas. In MG Lebwohl et al., eds., Treatment of Skin Disease: Comprehensive Therapeutic Strategies, 3rd ed., pp. 289–291. Edinburgh: Saunders Elsevier.
February 2, 2011
Susan C. Kim, MD - Pediatrics & Thomas Emmett Francoeur, MD, MDCM, CSPQ, FRCPC - Pediatrics
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