Kidalog/Baby Love Products, Camrose, Alberta, Canada
Keys to Preventing Diaper Rash

*Change the baby as soon as he wets! This applies whether or not you are using cloth or disposables. Customers who switch from disposables to cloth often call us and say "It's only been 2 hours, and already he's soaked!" These comments made us realize that people are leaving their babies in disposable diapers for long periods of time. A newborn may urinate more than 20 times a day. If the diaper (cloth or disposable) is not changed soon after EACH TIME the baby wets, the rash-causing bacteria have perfect conditions to multiply--warmth, darkness, moisture. One of the advantages of cloth diapers is that you can easily feel if the baby is wet, and change him immediately. Checking the diaper gets to be a habit each time you pick baby up. Cloth diapers are not meant to hold urine from several wettings, and it is not healthy for your baby to wear a wet diaper for several hours. (If your pants were wet, you'd change them very soon....the wet fabric chafing on your skin would soon give you a rash!)
*Wash baby's bottom carefully after each bowel movement, using plain water. Do not use soap, which is very drying to the skin. Do not use commercial baby wipes, which contain alcohol, scent, and other chemicals which are drying and irritating to the skin. Do not wash baby's bottom too often, as this will dry the skin. Usually washing after each bowel movement is often enough.
*Do not use scented detergent or fabric softener, as these leave residue in the fabric, which irritates the skin. Chlorine bleach can also be a skin irritant--if you insist on using bleach in your laundry, limit it to 1/4 cup of chlorine bleach, or use hydrogen peroxide bleach (President's Choice in the green bottle is one brand.)
*If baby has a rash problem, put diapers through a second rinse, with 1 cup of vinegar added to the rinse water to remove detergent residue and to lower pH of the diaper.
*Expose baby's bottom to air as much as possible. Cloth diapers and breathable diaper covers are ideal as they allow air circulation and keep the skin cool.
*Diarrhea is a common cause of diaper rash--if baby has runny stools, change the diaper immediately. The mixture of urine and feces produces ammonia, which increases enzyme activity in the feces, causing skin irritation.
*If baby has a bright red rash with clear edges, mainly in the creases of the skin in the diaper area, it may be a yeast or fungus infection--if it doesn't clear up, see your doctor.
*Plastic, scent, and other chemicals found in disposable diapers can irritate baby's skin.
*Most diaper rash creams contain ingredients that can not only IRRITATE the skin, but are actually TOXIC! Read the ingredients, and investigate their safety. Pure olive oil (yes, the same kind you eat), or other edible oils (such as safflower), pure aloe vera (available at health food stores), or ointments with a beeswax base (some people develop a sensitivity to beeswax), are good choices.
Simply keeping baby's bottom constantly dry (IMMEDIATELY CHANGING A WET DIAPER), and allowing air circulation (CLOTH DIAPERS AND BREATHABLE DIAPER COVERS) will almost always clear up diaper rash.
A comfortable baby is a happy baby!