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Common Neonatal Rashes

Common Neonatal Rashes - What it is


Seborrheic dermatitis is a common skin condition which affects infants before 3 months of age.

It is caused by hyperactive oil glands due to circulating maternal hormones after birth. A natural yeast called Malassezia (Pityrosporum) grows in the increased oily secretion, resulting in inflammation (redness) and overproduction of skin cells (scaling).

Infants usually outgrow this condition by 6 to 12 months of age. Some babies with seborrhoeic dermatitis will develop atopic dermatitis (eczema), especially if there is a family history of eczema, allergic rhinitis (sensitive nose) or asthma.


Neonatal acne is quite common and affects about 20% of babies. It occurs as a result of maternal hormonal stimulation of hyperactive sebaceous (oil-secreting) glands.

It appears from a few weeks to few months of age.


Diaper dermatitis, or diaper rash is a skin condition where the skin covered by diapers develops a rash.

It is one of the most common skin problems in infants and young children.

Diaper dermatitis occurs due to several different factors. The most common cause is irritation by urine and faeces, especially if there the baby has loose stools or diarrhoea, or the diapers are not changed frequently. Tight fitting diapers can cause friction over the folds of the groin area. Secondary infection with bacteria and candida yeast is also common in the groin area.

Some skin conditions e.g. seborrheic dermatitis or atopic dermatitis can affect the diaper area. These can be worsened by the abovementioned factors as well.

Common Neonatal Rashes - Causes and Risk Factors

Common Neonatal Rashes - Diagnosis

Common Neonatal Rashes - Preparing for surgery

Common Neonatal Rashes - Post-surgery care

Common Neonatal Rashes - Other Information

The information provided is not intended as medical advice. Terms of use. Information provided by SingHealth

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