While baby drool can be an annoying (albeit critical) process of teething that you can’t do anything about, you can prevent drool rash. Drooling and excess saliva in general are just part of a young baby’s growth. At that age, everything is centered around their mouth. From three to six months, in particular, this can be very common in babies.

  • Drooling and saliva are responsible for many roles in your newborn.
  • It keeps your baby’s mouth moist
  • It helps wash away food or milk residue
  • It can make it easier for a baby to swallow, especially since saliva can soften food
  • Once your baby has teeth, it reduces tooth decay.
  • It also helps digestion due to the enzymes present in saliva which both change starches into sugars and neutralize stomach acid.

Sometimes, though there’s just simply too much drool. Your little one may develop a skin condition, sometimes called a teething rash as excess saliva production is associated with teething. Saliva is thought to soothe their irritated gums. New parents may also wonder how long drool rash lasts? Most babies stop having bouts of drool rash when they are in the 15-month to 18-month range.

Signs & Symptoms Of Drool Rash

Drool rash often looks like flat or slightly raised patches of reddened skin with small red bumps. These can appear on the mouth, cheeks, neck, or even chest. Sometimes the skin appears chapped as well. The patches may be moist or dry. Milder versions of drool rash may initially present as irritated skin.

Some parents wonder if drool rashes and teething rashes hurt. Well, it depends. Some babies do experience pain, if it’s not resolved quickly. And some babies are simply irritated, but not in pain.

Sometimes drool rash can look similar to other forms of dermatitis. A good way to narrow down the cause is to see if your baby has any other allergies or irritants besides drool that could be causing the problem.

What Causes Drool Rash?

Drool rash is simply caused by too much drool. When that much liquid is left lingering on the baby’s delicate and sensitive skin for an extended period of time, it’s easy for a rash to develop. But where is all this drool coming from?

Teething

Excess saliva is a very common symptom of teething. Babies may gnaw on their hands or other objects as their teeth begin to erupt. Saliva then drips down their faces, necks, and bodies where it can gather and pool.

Food Residue

If a smear of food is left on your baby’s face for too long, it can also lead to a drool rash. Sometimes food gets on their faces when they are experimenting with solids. Or your baby may not be able to keep food down if they don’t have their front teeth in yet.

Pacifiers

These are another culprit for teething rashes. As pacifiers can stay in babies’ mouths for a long time, saliva that trickles out gets trapped between the pacifier and the chin. This gives time for the drooling rash to develop.

Home Remedies

While these are the major causes, your baby may also just drool a lot. So what can you do to prevent and manage drool rashes? There are a few solutions.

Prevention Is Key

The best thing you can do is prevent drool rash in the first place.

Frequently drying your baby is a good idea. Especially after feedings. Keep a burp cloth handy (or use a receiving blanket) and make sure to wipe down your baby’s drool. Don’t focus on just the face. Make sure to check the folds of their neck and pat down the chest as well. Dab gently—remember their skin is sensitive!

You can also use a bib too to protect your baby’s chest. This can prevent chafing and the rash if your baby soaks through their shirt quickly. Change bibs as needed.

Eliminate Other Irritants

Make sure you are using baby-safe detergents, soaps, and other cleansers. When in doubt, choose the fragrance-free option. Cleaning their pacifiers or teething toys frequently also helps. You can monitor your baby to see if a particular object or product worsens the rash when present.

Clean & Apply Soothing Creams

Wash the affected areas gently twice a day. It’s going to take time for the skin to heal and you don’t want an infection to set in. Check with your physician to see if you can use an ointment like Aquafor or petroleum jelly to soothe your baby’s skin and create another barrier.

When To Call the Doctor

If you are not seeing improvement with home treatment or spot any of the following signs, it may be a good idea to get in touch with your pediatrician. They can go over the next steps.

  • If the rash begins to crack, ooze, or weep other fluid. This could be a sign of an infection, and a physician may give you an antibiotic.
  • If your child has a fever.
  • If they’re having difficulty breathing or swallowing, reach out. This may also be a sign of an allergic reaction or a sign of choking.
  • If your baby is fussy or refusing to eat.

Now that you know more about drool rash treatment and prevention, the next step on your parenting journey is to find experienced and compassionate child care. Let Sittercity help. Thousands of new sitters and nannies join every day—search and book the best option for you and your family.

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