There are many causes of diaper rash, including prolonged exposure to a soiled diaper, chafing, an allergic reaction or a bacterial or yeast infection. Diaper rash can be quite painful for babies, so you should treat it right away.
“The most effective way to treat diaper rash is to air it out,” says Joy L. LeDoux-Johnson, MD, pediatrician and internal medicine physician at Saint Francis Medical Center. “Allow your baby to be without a diaper for frequent periods throughout the day. You should also change the diaper as soon as it becomes wet or soiled.”
There are many creams and ointments available to treat diaper rash. Look for a medication that has zinc oxide and petrolatum in the ingredient list. “Do not use hydrocortisone unless directed by your child’s pediatrician. The pediatrician can also prescribe creams if over-the-counter products are not effective,” says LeDoux-Johnson.