Babies often break out in rashes and spots around their mouths, and it can be really hard to figure out why. Is it what they’re eating, what they’re touching, or something else entirely?!
First things first: if you’re worried about your little one’s skin, contact your doctor! Any infections need to be checked out, as babies are especially vulnerable to complications, and your GP might want to prescribe antibiotics.
Having said that, if perioral - or periorificial - dermatitis (PD) is diagnosed it can be really difficult to manage the often daily flares, even with a doctor’s help! A dribbly baby can get very sore, with a bumpy, inflamed rash around the mouth, cheeks, nose and chin. The spots can even reach up to a baby’s eyes and ears, and can cause a fair amount of discomfort and upset.
Here are our top tips for coping with outbreaks of mild periroal dermatitis in babies:
- Avoid steroids. Don’t use topical corticosteroid creams on the face unless it is absolutely necessary! Steroids are known to be one of the key causes of PD and should be avoided on the delicate skin of the face, if at all possible.
- Avoid soapy bubbles! Use a natural, soap-free, sulphate-free, scent-free wash (a tiny, pea-sized amount of Balmonds Natural Shampoo & Body Wash will do the trick) and warm water to clean skin, rather than soaps or synthetic body washes, and definitely steer clear of bubble baths until they're older.
- Keep skin dry - but not too dry! Pat their face dry with a very soft cloth; you can use kitchen roll rather than cotton wool or a rough towel. Leave the skin ever-so-slightly damp rather than bone dry, before applying emollients.
- Apply a barrier balm, such as Balmonds Skin Salvation, to the skin around the mouth, cheeks and chin. This will protect delicate skin from drool and irritant foods. Do make sure it’s breathable and natural, rather than full of occlusive paraffin which can increase the risk of infection!
- Check what they’re eating. If your baby is on solids, then consider whether they are sensitive to certain things they’re eating; citrus, strawberries, fish, dairy, tomatoes and acidic foods can cause an almost-instant flare in some babies.
- Moisturise. If your little one’s skin is dry and unbroken, you can use a light, natural, neutral moisturiser such as Balmonds Daily Moisturising Cream in between balm applications. (If their face is raw, weeping or scratched, stick to the balm.)
Balmonds Natural Shampoo & Body Wash with nettle and chamomile (£19 for 200ml)
Balmonds Daily Moisturising Cream with shea butter and hemp (from £13.99 for 100ml)
Balmonds Skin Salvation balm with hemp and olive (from £7.99 for 30ml)
If you require medical advice we recommend you always contact your healthcare professional.
If you or someone you are caring for seems very unwell, is getting worse or you think there's something seriously wrong, call for emergency services straight away. For general medical advice, please contact your healthcare professional, this article does not contain or replace medical advice.
Do not delay getting help if you're worried. Trust your instincts.