Common skin rashes in babies

It is considered normal for infants to develop skin rashes as early as a few days old since their sensitive skin adapts to a different environment. Most forms of rashes are relatively harmless and vanish after some time. On the other hand, if the baby develop skin rashes and seem unwell or if worried, consult a doctor to determine the cause and if further treatment is required.


Almost half of all newborns develop miniature white spots known as milia on their face. These are simply clogged pores and typically clear up within the first 4 weeks of life.

Erythema toxicum

Some newborns end up with a blotchy reddened skin reaction known as erythema toxicum usually at 2-3 days old. Take note that it is a normal skin rash that will not cause any issues to the child and eventually clears up after a few days.

Cradle cap

Cradle cap involves yellowish, scaly, greasy patches that develop on the scalp. In some cases, it also affects the ears, face and neck. This is a common condition among infants that tends to develop within 2-3 months after birth. The condition gets better without treatment in a few weeks or months.

You can wash the baby’s scalp and hair gently using baby shampoo to prevent further patches from developing.

Neonatal acne

In some cases, pimples develop on the nose, cheeks and forehead of the baby within months of birth. These tend to become worse before clearing up completely after a few weeks or months.

You can wash the face of the baby with water and mild moisturizer to improve the skin’s appearance. Do not use acne medications that are intended for adults and older children. Blackheads or pimples that develop after 3 months of age tend to be more severe and often require medical care.

Infant skin rashes

Hand, foot and mouth disease is mild viral condition that causes blister rash on the soles of the feet, palms of the hands as well as mouth ulcers.


Eczema is a chronic condition that causes the skin to turn red, itchy, dry and cracked. The most prevalent form is atopic eczema that typically affects children and infants, but can continue up to adulthood.

Nappy rash

This form of skin rash occurs once the skin surrounding the nappy area becomes irritated. This is often due to extended exposure to stool or urine but can also develop due to fungal infection or certain skin conditions.

Urticaria (hives)

This skin rash is red, elevated and itchy that manifest when a potential irritant triggers the release of histamine in the skin. In case the baby develops urticaria during feeding, it might be due to something that was drank or eaten. The usual foods include milk and eggs.

Hand, foot and mouth disease

This is a common, mild viral condition that causes blister rash on the soles of the feet, palms of the hands as well as mouth ulcers. The baby will have fever and feels unwell. Treatment is not needed since the immune system clears up the virus and the symptoms subside after 7-10 days.


Ringworm is a common fungal infection that causes ring-like reddish skin rashes on any part of the body but quite common in the groin, feet and the scalp. This is typically managed using over-the-counter creams.



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