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Baby yeast infections are common and can occur when a kind of yeast called ‘Candida’ grows out of control. Vaginal yeast infection is quite common, and it affects over 1 million women in the United States every year. A baby yeast infection affects babies the same way a yeast infection would affect any adult.
A baby with a yeast infection will be grumpy and frustrated when being fed. In this article, we shall discuss what is a baby yeast infection, the symptoms of baby yeast infection, the causes, and how to treat baby yeast infection.
What is Baby Yeast Infection?
Yeast can be found in a variety of locations throughout the body. Yeast is most commonly found on the skin and it prefers a warm, humid climate. As a result, yeast infections are more likely to arise in the moist parts of the body.
A baby yeast infection is also known as a baby thrush and occurs due to the accumulation of dirt and bacteria in the mouth and genital area of your child. Children can get a yeast infection in areas such as the armpit, neck, mouth, and diaper area.
Children are always moving and refusing to stop for diaper changes which can result in a moist diaper and this is where yeast grows. Some children may even be in the process of toilet training and the frequent accidents or changes in the process could lead to a yeast infection.
Yeast Infections vs Diaper Rash
Diaper rash is a word that refers to the rashes that occur in children under the age of two as a result of them wearing diapers. Diaper rash is very common from 9 to 12 months of age. Candida is known to cause about 45 percent to 75 percent of all diaper rashes in children who use diapers and is known as Candidal diaper dermatitis or fungal infection. Hence, in many children, yeast infection and diaper rash are the same types of infections.
What Are The Signs Of A Yeast Infection In Baby
The following are the signs and symptoms of a yeast infection in children-
- A bright red rash with a slightly elevated border.
- The rash appears only under the diaper and does not migrate to other parts of the body.
- Pimples, blisters, ulcers, and pus-filled sores are some of the most common skin conditions.
- Small red patches that link to other large patches.
- The rash is limited to the diaper area and does not spread to other parts of the body.
What Are The Causes Of Baby Yeast Infections?
Candida fungus is the most common cause of yeast infections in children. Although this fungus is responsible for 45 percent to 75 percent of all diaper rashes, it is also responsible for some diaper rashes which is caused by the following-
- Maceration of the skin.
- Overhydration of the skin.
- Skin that has been in contact with urine and excrement for an extended period.
- Soaps for diapers.
- Biotin deficiency- having three or more diarrheal stools per day.
- Dermatitis of the skin is caused by contact.
- Symptoms of an allergy.
How To Diagnose Diaper Rash/ Baby Yeast Infections?
Scientifically, skin scrapings or biopsy material is cultivated and examined under a microscope after a potassium hydroxide treatment shows the fungus, but this is rarely used to diagnose a yeast infection in children. In regular scenarios, all that is needed to diagnose a yeast infection is a clear observation/ diagnosis by the parents or a doctor.
What Are The Treatments For Diaper Rash/ Yeast Infections In Children?
- Almost all diaper rash causes / yeast infections can be treated with diaper rash creams such as, medical zinc oxide creams as the first line of defense.
- Antifungal medications (for example, nystatin cream) may be administered if yeast is the source of infection/diaper rash.
- Hydrocortisone cream (1% hydrocortisone) can help with pain and inflammation.
- Antifungal medicine, lotions, and ointments are widely accessible as over-the-counter (OTC) treatments.
How To Treat Baby Yeast Infections At Home?
- All causes of diaper rash, including yeast infections, can be avoided by changing diapers more frequently and keeping the diaper region clean and dry.
- Do not use diapers that fit too tightly against the skin.
- To treat yeast infections, over-the-counter home treatments such as Desitin, A+D ointment, Triple Paste, and Vaseline are available for both prevention and therapy.
- Diaper rash and/or severe yeast infections can necessitate extra therapy, such as systemic antifungals and perhaps hospitalization.
- Before using any product on children for yeast infections or diaper rash, see your child’s doctor.
- Allowing the child to go without a diaper for a short period, such as lying the child on a dry towel, reduces the risk of a yeast infection.
Are Yeast Infections Dangerous For Children?
Yeast infections are not dangerous for children, but they can be very uncomfortable and cause itching. Young babies are more prone to itching sensation with yeast infections. In children with a weak immune system, the virus can enter the bloodstream in rare situations.
This can also happen in children who may have had medical issues that need placement of IVs or catheters under their skin for extended periods. The majority of yeast-related diaper rashes are harmless. However, skin breaks can occur as a result of severe yeast infections and/or diaper rash, allowing additional organisms to infect the person.
When To Call Your Child's Doctor/Children's Hospital?
You can call your child’s doctor if your child/children get a fever, or rash starts oozing, or if your child has open sores, pimples, or blisters, you should see a doctor. This could be a sign of a bacterial infection that requires medical treatment.
If your child is less than 6 months old, it’s best to call the doctor to make sure you’re treating it appropriately and that there’s no other problem. The rashes which worsen, don’t go away, or spread to the abdomen, back, arms, or face should be seen by a doctor.
A doctor will be able to examine a yeast infection just by looking at it. However, sometimes a test or diagnosis may be conducted which will confirm that the rash is a yeast infection. A KOH test is conducted, where the infected area is scanned under a microscope to confirm it as yeast infections.
How To Prevent Yeast Infection In Babies/ Diaper Rash In Your Children?
The best way to prevent and treat yeast diaper rash is to keep your baby’s bottom clean and dry. Below are a few tips that might help you to prevent yeast infection or diaper rash.
- Baby wipes containing scents or alcohol should be avoided.
- Cloth wipes should be washed two or three times and no fabric softeners or dryer sheets should be used.
- As soon as your child urinates or passes stool, change their diaper.
- At each diaper change, carefully clean the diaper region with water.
- Before putting on a new diaper, pat the area dry or allow it to air dry.
Baby yeast infections/ diaper rash is very common in children and is treatable. As a parent, you might feel guilty that you are responsible for your baby’s rash. Consult a doctor if your child continues to have yeast infections regularly. Frequent yeast infections could have an underlying cause that has to be treated. Yeast infections in the diaper area will automatically heal and stop once your baby stops wearing diapers.