Adult Nappy Rash Information
A scab: a tiny, thick covering that protects the tissue underneath from contamination. Excessive scratching or irritation with other skincare products can cause a scab to form as part of the body's natural defence - an attempt to protect the damaged area from further damage. This level of protection is temporary; however, if it becomes aggravated and left untreated, it may cause breakdowns in healthy skin tissue around it. If these types of problems persist over time, they could lead to permanent scars or discolouration on the skin, such as age spots and brown patches.
The epidermis is the outer level of the skin, and it has many layers. It protects the body from infection and toxic substances. The uppermost layer - the stratum corneum - comprises dead skin cells that flake off regularly. If these dead skin cells are not shed properly, they can build up and become rough, thickened, flaky or scaly patches of skin that contain trapped bacteria and dirt. This causes irritation, which can lead to a nappy rash.
The stratum corneum does not contain any blood vessels or living cells; it only has dead ones! Each layer consists of approximately fifteen to twenty layers of flattened cells that are roughly 20 microns thick.
The stratum corneum comprises layers of flat, dead skin cells that are tightly compacted together to form a waterproof barrier. This layer also contains oils and moisture that help keep the skin pliable and smooth.
Infants' skin is more vulnerable to nappy rash because their skin cells are growing and dividing rapidly during this stage, which means they can easily fall off. Babies' immune systems are not fully developed either, so they have less resistance than adults to infection. A baby's delicate skin doesn't have as much protection from dirt and bacteria because the stratum corneum is thinner than in an adult's.
A nappy rash is typically caused by an allergic reaction to urine or stool in the nappy, friction from being left in a wet and dirty nappy for too long, exposure to heat when nappies are not changed quickly enough, or an infection from bacteria entering a break in the skin. The symptoms include inflammation, redness and swelling of the skin, small red pimples or blisters (similar to acne), thickening of the skin with peeling and cracking at the corners of the mouth and eyes.
The most important part of treatment is changing wet and soiled nappies promptly, along with keeping your baby's bottom clean by using mild soap and water. In your journal, you may wish to note the things that seem to be triggering the rash and when you change your baby's nappy. This can help you predict when it might happen again so that you are better able to keep your child clean and comfortable during those times.
The following is a list of safe and effective home remedies that can help prevent and treat nappy rashes:
Carrot juice contains a large amount of vitamin A, known for its ability to soften skin and relieve itching. In fact, doctors have used it to treat skin irritations for centuries! Applying some carrot juice onto the affected area may help stop the itching.
Yoghurt contains a healthy dose of probiotics and natural enzymes that are good for the digestive system and skin. Mixing yoghurt with herbal tinctures or essential oils may offer a safe and effective treatment for nappy rash. These can be applied directly to the affected area without harming sensitive skin.
Cabbage leaves are well known for their soothing effects on irritated or damaged skin. Simply taking a cabbage leaf, cutting out any problematic veins, and placing it on the affected area will lower the temperature and relieve pain associated with nappy rash. Cabbage has also traditionally been used to treat skin problems.
Aloe vera gel is another natural remedy that can work as a moisturizer for nappy rash. Aloe vera has been used by the ancient Egyptians for more than three thousand years. It is an excellent all-purpose treatment because it will heal wounds, soothe sunburns, and improve skin conditions.
Hydrogen peroxide is an excellent treatment for nappy rash because it kills bacteria rapidly, bringing immediate relief and improving your skin condition. You can easily prepare hydrogen peroxide at home, and it is a very safe treatment option.
The overall goal of treating nappy rash is to stop it in its tracks to prevent the condition from recurring. You can use this list to see what works best for you or your child.
A life-threatening nappy rash should be treated by a doctor immediately. Still, mild cases of nappy rash may be treated with home remedies such as applying moistened tea bags or apple cider vinegar directly to the affected area or using essential oils mixed with water as a skin cleansing and soothing agent.