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Monday, May 12, 2014

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Adventures in Booty Rash

When Little B developed an infected ingrown toenail at just 2 months old, I thought that the antibiotics that the doctor prescribed to treat it would be the end of my worries. Little did I know that our adventure was just beginning! About a week into the 2-week course of antibiotics, he started developing a diaper rash. Back to the nurse’s hotline I went!

Having described the little red bumps and redness in the creases of his legs and that if I only put rash cream on the red part, other areas just broke out, the nurse and I were able to determine that Little B had likely developed a yeast rash. Since I caught it at the very beginning, she suggested that instead of prescription medicine, we should try some home remedies first. So we gave him baths 3 times a day in warm water and baking soda followed by lots of diaper-free time, and continuing with traditional (petroleum-based) cream mixed with over-the-counter miconazole (yeast infection cream) at every diaper change. This necessitated the use of a flushable liner. We liked the Bummis brand because their generous size kept our diapers protected even when they inevitably shifted, however we did find that we had to throw them out rather than flush because our old plumbing could not handle them.

After two weeks on this regimen, we were all getting a bit frustrated. While the bumps seemed to have disappeared and the rash was no longer spreading, Little B still had quite the red booty in some places. I felt like his booty should be looking better at this point, and my mommy instinct was telling me that things needed to change in order for Little B to get fully healed. Little B had no patience for his booty baths, even though we had made up a little song and dance for him (“A-booty booty booty, A-rash rash rash!” bought us maybe half a day). Furthermore, in our exceedingly dry Minnesota winter, even with lots of lotion Little B’s skin was getting very dry. To top it off, our caretaker kept forgetting to use a liner with the rash cream – I nearly cried when a generous helping of cream ended up smeared on our brand new bumGenius 4.0 Mirror! Not my precious Mirror! 4 hours of Dawn scrubbing with a toothbrush and one very sore wrist later, I was DONE and started looking for other options (no worries, the Dawn scrub followed by a hot wash with cloth diaper-safe detergent really did remove the cream and my diaper was saved, I mean Little B’s diaper).

After a lot of research, I realized that Little B’s yeast rash seemed to be cleared, but the bright red, dried-out looking rash that remained behind (pun intended) was most likely due to how acidic his poop had gotten after taking the antibiotic. A close friend suggested 100% pure, unscented argan oil to help his very dried out little booty. Being a pure, plant-harvested oil, it did stain our cloth diapers. We like the argan oil versus other types of oils because it soaks into the skin within seconds, and a little goes a long way! I also discovered that there are myriad cloth diaper-safe diaper rash creams. I promptly ordered the aptly named GroVia Magic Stick to protect Little B’s healing booty from what it was producing, until his digestive system regulated. We love the Magic Stick because the twist-up design means you don’t have to get any goop on your hands, and after a suspected yeast rash you can cut off the top with a kitchen knife and still use the rest of the stick rather than having to throw out the whole thing.

After every diaper change, we spread on a little argan oil, let it soak in during 10-30 minutes of diaper free time, then slathered him up with his Magic Stick before replacing his diaper. This worked like a charm – within 2 days he was totally healed and the rash finally stayed gone. To ensure it didn’t come back, we added chlorine-free bleach (half the manufacturer’s recommended amount) to our diaper laundry and washed on hot then did two extra rinses. Regular hot washes during the infection should do the trick but we added the bleach just to be on the safe side.

We still use the Magic Stick every night before bedtime, and every time we think he might be starting to develop something, we spread on a little argan oil and seal it up with the Magic Stick at each diaper change, and it’s usually gone by the next morning. No more liners and messy paste, no more worrying about my precious, pretty diapers getting ruined, no more carpal tunnel, and no more angry red booty!

Note: If you suspect any type of booty rash please call your healthcare professional first! This post is meant to help us cloth-diapering parents navigate treatments that won’t ruin our precious, pretty diapers and does not substitute for healthcare professional recommendations.

Bio: Leah is a full-time molecular biologist, partner to John and mommy to Little B & her 3 furbabies. She’s a headstrong Minnesotan woman who loves to cook, craft and cloth diaper.

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Casey Lege said...

Thanks for the helpful info!

Leayra Germaine said...

I am so ready to start using my cloth diapers in an effort to end my LOs rash. Thanks for the helpful advice :)