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Most babies experience diaper rash at one time or another. This is usually caused by a diaper being left on for too long or the wetness not being absorbed properly by the diaper. The diaper itself can cause irritation and cloth diapers must be washed with a gentle detergent. In rare cases the baby might be unable to absorb food properly causing feces to become acid and in turn causing a rash.

Diaper rash is easily treated. While at home, the baby can be left without a diaper for a few hours. This will help as fresh air will allow the skin to dry out. Wash the affected area thoroughlly and use a cream such as zinc oxide which will also prevent future outbreaks, or creams containing chamomile or calendula as these are soothing.

If the above treatments do not work, you might be mistaking a fungal infection for diaper rash. These are best prevented by good hygene and if a mother has thrush, she should be careful in handling her baby as it could be passed on. In such cases use an anti-candida cream or tea tree oil. However, if symptoms persist after 48 hours consult the baby's doctor.

If there is a history of skin problems in the family, don't feed the baby solids too early. Citrus fruits and other foods containing acids shouldn't be given to a baby before the age of 9 months as they can cause loose stools which may affect the skin.

If rash persists try treating with a low dose steroid based anti inflammatory cream. It is a good idea to consult a doctor before treating in this way and it should only be used for a short while. If the doctor diagnoses a bacterial infection, antibiotics may be needed to clear the rash.