Your baby is born with skin that’s almost too soft and beautiful to be believed. You’ve probably spent the first few weeks just rubbing your finger along her arm or cheek, practically addicted to the smooth tenderness.
And then suddenly your two-week old infant looks like a orange! His cheeks, nose and forehead are bumpy and red, with tiny pimples. Is this an allergic reaction? Is it dangerous Should you call Alzein Pediatrics?
Probably not. This rash is most likely one of two very common skin eruptions; erythema toxicum, or E tox, or milia. These conditions appear within one to four weeks of birth. Despite the old wive’s tale that these are caused by Mother’s hormones leaving Baby’s body, there is no evidence to support this idea.
E tox, also called baby acne, usually appears within the first week or so after birth. It does look like acne, with yellowish-white bumps in the middle of red swellings. The irritation can appear on your baby’s face, torso, upper arms and thighs. About half of all babies will experience E tox.
Milia are also tiny white bumps, on cheeks, chin and across the nose. Milia are cysts that form because your baby’s oil glands are still developing. Skin does not slough off normally, and becomes trapped in a tiny pocket of skin. Milia that forms on the roof of your baby’s mouth are called Epstein Pearls. Milia is common and normal.
Getting rid of either E tox or milia is simple – do nothing! Either condition will disappear within a few weeks. Keep your baby’s face clean and dry, using tepid water and a soft cloth. Don’t use soap or other drying agents. Do not apply any over the counter medications, as ointments and creams meant for adult can harm your baby’s fragile skin.
If the rash lasts longer than a few weeks or if it seems to burn or itch, causing discomfort, call your Alzein Pediatrics medical professional at 708-424-7600 or click the yellow “Book An Appointment” button on the left. We will examine your baby’s skin condition and, if necessary, prescribe an age-appropriate medication.
Questions about your baby’s skin – or anything else? Alzein Pediatric Associates is always ready to provide full information and details about your child’s health and well-being!