Baby Acne, Not as Bad as it Looks!
Newborn baby acne
Baby acne (neonatal acne) is a common, but not serious
complaint which usually appears about three weeks after the
birth, although it can be present at the time of the
birth. A baby acne rash looks like red bumps or
pimples and usually appears on the face -- mainly on the
cheeks, forehead and chin.
Baby acne is though to be caused by the mothers hormones
which pass through the placenta and are present in the
baby's sebaceous glands. About 20% of babies are affected,
male babies are more prone than females.
Although it may look alarming, treatment for baby acne
isn't normally necessary as it will more often than not,
disappear by itself after a few weeks. If your baby develops
acne, it doesn't necessarily mean they will have acne in
later life. Also if mum or dad suffer with acne, it doesn't
necessarily mean baby will have acne too.
There are other rashes which baby could have which
sometimes can be confused with baby acne. These are
infant eczema and seborrheic dermatitis.
Infant eczema will appear later than baby acne, typically
between one and five months of age. It appears as red bumps
or patches mainly on the face but sometimes all over the
Infant eczema may be caused by allergies, for example to
cow's milk, although it can also be caused by dry skin.
Simple eczema just needs treating with a natural moisturizer
however steroid treatment may be needed if the eczema is
Seborrheic dermatitis (seborrhea) appears mainly on the
hairy parts of the baby's body for example the eyelashes,
eyebrows or scalp. It looks like red pimples which are
smaller than the pimples of baby acne. Seborrheic dermatitis
can also appear as yellow crusty scales.
Seborrhea can be treated with steroid creams if severe.
It will usually eventually go away on it's own.
Neither a baby acne rash, infant eczema or seborrhea are
causes for concern unless they are very severe or persist
for months. Normal bathing and baby hygiene will take care
of most cases.
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