Why prickly heat appears in newborns and how to treat it

Why prickly heat appears in newborns and how to treat it

25.05.2022 0 By admin

The appearance of prickly heat in a baby always causes excitement in adults. Miliaria is a rash of small red, pink, or white blisters. It occurs in places where heat exchange is disturbed: the release of sweat and its evaporation from the surface of the skin. Most often, prickly heat occurs in the neck, back, buttocks, thighs, groin and perineum. Eliminate the manifestations of prickly heat is not difficult. To do this, you must follow hygiene rules, use suitable cosmetic products for child care. But first consult a doctor to establish an accurate diagnosis.

What is sweating

Prickly heat in newborns is usually called a pathological condition that occurs as a result of a violation of the processes of regulation of heat transfer from the skin and deeper tissues. It is the newborn child who most often suffers from it, although the condition can also occur in an older child. Miliaria is a rash of small red, pink, or white blisters.

prickly heat in newborns

Sweating in newborns – a sign of a violation of heat exchange

Prickly heat in newborns can occur on any skin area where heat transfer is disturbed, sweat is released and it evaporates from the surface of the skin. But most often it occurs:

  • in the neck;
  • on the back;
  • on the buttocks;
  • on the thighs;
  • in the groin and perineum.

Although prickly heat in a newborn is not a contagious condition, however, parents need increased attention and appropriate action to eliminate the rash. This is due to the fact that it causes significant discomfort to the child, is able to actively spread on the body, move from one area to another. However, its appearance in the face is rarely observed.

Causes of rashes

The occurrence of a rash is associated with the immaturity of the physiological mechanisms of thermoregulation in newborns and young infants. The main role in the processes of temperature regulation is assigned to the sweat glands, which are unevenly located on the body. Most of them are located in areas that are most prone to overheating.

The main causes of prickly heat in the baby:

  • increased sweating due to hot weather;
  • overheating of the child due to excessive wrapping;
  • damage to the skin with tissues, diapers, clothes is the main cause of the appearance on the neck;
  • frequent application of oily creams to the skin that disrupt the functioning of skin pores and glands;
  • prolonged stay in a stuffy, unventilated room;
  • violation of hygiene rules;
  • rare bathing;
  • high body temperature, provoking profuse sweating.

In case of violation of heat transfer from the surface of the skin, the sweat glands are activated – the baby sweats profusely. In a newborn child and a young infant, the sweat glands are prone to clogging. Because of what, a secret accumulates in them, irritating the skin. When evaporation is disturbed, sweat accumulates more and more on the skin, which leads to the appearance of a rash in a newborn .

on the face

Sweating on the face may occur due to violation of the rules of child care

Even after taking measures to normalize heat transfer, the state of the sweat glands does not normalize. Also, deposits of salts and fat remain on the skin, which negatively affect the state of the sweat glands. To alleviate the condition, hygiene measures are required.

Types of prickly heat

Depending on the appearance and associated symptoms, it is customary in medicine to distinguish various variants of sweating rashes. Sweating in newborns is of the following types:

  • red;
  • crystal;
  • papular;
  • white;
  • yellow.

The first 3 types are not dangerous and often disappear on their own with proper care for the child. The rest occur when the infection is attached. They require medical attention and appropriate treatment.

What does red prickly heat look like

The red version is outwardly similar to hives. With it, nodules or vesicles appear on the skin, surrounded by red skin. The red type is characterized by itching. There is such a rash in the skin folds, which resembles diaper rash.

Such a rash can last for 7-15 days, after which it often goes away on its own if hygiene rules are observed, and the room where the child is ventilated. The red type rarely appears on the face.

Crystal variant

Outwardly, it looks like white bubbles, closely located next to each other and able to merge. When exposed to external factors, they easily burst, after which areas of peeling with a changed skin color are formed in their place. They are characterized by the absence of itching and soreness – such a rash does not affect the general condition of the child. The crystalline variant disappears on its own within 2-5 days. This type often occurs on the head .

papular type

Such prickly heat looks like small bubbles that do not differ in color from the rest of the skin. Appears due to frequent and severe sweating. Often occurs on the neck, hips . The papular type lasts for a short time and, as a rule, disappears on its own. In the face area, the papular type practically does not appear.

What does the white type of prickly heat look like

It looks like collected on a small area of the skin or scattered vesicles with a white or grayish liquid inside. It can occur anywhere on the body. Easily injured – fluid flows out of the bubbles, but often they are recruited again.

What does the yellow type of prickly heat look like

Outwardly, the rash is similar to the previous version, but the vesicles are filled with yellow, less often yellow-green, liquid or mushy contents. It pours out after the rupture of the bladder shell. There is a tendency to spread rapidly.

Symptoms of prickly heat

True prickly heat in the face is quite rare. Most often, the appearance of a rash on the face of a child is a sign of an allergic reaction. Although the appearance of a rash in the scalp area is most often prickly heat. The occurrence of true prickly heat in the face is most often observed with an extensive rash of other areas.

how to treat

Only a doctor knows for sure how to treat prickly heat

With sweating, the following symptoms are often present:

  • peeling is a characteristic feature;
  • the formation of groups from the elements of the rash;
  • dryness or excessive moisture of the skin.

The most characteristic places for the appearance of prickly heat on the face of an infant are the forehead, chin, and areas near the ears. This is due to the fact that it is these areas that are covered with hats, hoods and scarves – it is on them that heat transfer is disturbed. Therefore, the formation of a rash in these areas is a clear sign of improper care for the newborn – its frequent overheating.

How to distinguish allergies from prickly heat

Although the manifestations of prickly heat are similar to the symptoms of an allergic reaction, this is a relatively mild condition that does not pose a threat to the child, and is easily treatable. Despite the fact that only a doctor knows for sure how to distinguish an allergy from prickly heat, it is highly likely that you can do it yourself.

The presence of a direct relationship between overheating of the baby and the appearance of rashes on the skin will help. If the baby sweats and a rash appears, it is most likely that he has prickly heat. In her favor is also indicated by the absence of skin itching and a rise in temperature. The presence of prickly heat in the face area also confirms the presence of similar rashes on other parts of the body.

It is worth thinking about allergies in the case when rashes appeared after a change in the diet of the mother and / or child, the introduction of new complementary foods. If the rashes are accompanied by itching, they are 97% likely to be allergic in nature.

With an allergic nature of the rash, it is necessary to seek medical help as soon as possible.

In a situation where airing the room, regularly bathing the baby, wearing clothes that are optimal for a particular weather do not lead to the disappearance of the rash, it is worth suspecting its allergic origin. Also in favor of allergies is the appearance of rashes in the face area, regardless of their subsequent spread.

What can sweating lead to

A persistent rash, especially if left untreated, can lead to the development of complications or provoke the emergence of new diseases. The condition may cause:

  • vesiculopustulosis;
  • purulent infections;
  • eczematous changes;
  • common diaper rash;
  • the appearance of wounds;
  • the formation of ulcers;
  • penetration of infection into the bloodstream and the development of sepsis.

With the addition of a purulent infection, the appearance of common diaper rash, wounds, medical attention is required. The development of sepsis is an extremely dangerous condition. Only a doctor should deal with it.

How to treat skin rashes at home

Eliminate the pathological condition is not difficult. To do this, you must follow hygiene rules, use suitable cosmetic products for child care. In mild cases, you can resort to traditional medicine methods.

How to treat a common lesion is known only to a medical specialist, so self-medication is strictly contraindicated.

newborn baby

Chamomile baths can be used to treat prickly heat in a newborn baby.

To eliminate symptoms and speed up recovery will help:

  • regular intake of air baths – the temperature of the environment should be in the range of 19-21 ⁰С;
  • frequent changes of diapers and diapers;
  • wearing clothes made from natural fabrics.

Subject to hygiene measures for several days, the condition should return to normal. If this does not happen, it is worth using special ointments, powders, baths with medicinal herbs.

Herbal baths

The use of baths with herbs will relieve irritation of the skin, reduce the activity of inflammation. For medical purposes use:

  • chamomile;
  • succession;
  • oak bark;
  • yarrow.

To take a bath, you need to prepare a decoction for 30 minutes. before bathing. To this end, 3 Art. spoons of grass pour 1 liter of boiling water, and filter after 30 minutes. Then the broth is added to warm water and stirred. After taking a bath, the skin is patted with a towel, then powdered with baby powder.

The powder has a therapeutic effect due to the presence of talc, starch and zinc in the composition. They fight infection well, normalize skin moisture. Powder can be used only in open areas, in no case under a diaper or diaper.

Ointments and creams should be selected among those containing zinc and panthenol, based on the recommendations of the pediatrician.

Treatment of severe or widespread prickly heat should also be handled by a pediatrician.


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