Does your baby have red spots on their face? Here are a few possible reasons why.

Babies have soft skin, which makes them very sensitive and susceptible to developing blemishes, spots, and scratches.

According to the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP), spots and rashes happen due to problems with acne, heat, drooling, or vomit.

Why does your baby have red spots on their face?

Because your baby’s skin is so sensitive, there are a number of reasons why they might break out or develop a rash. Here are a few of the most common explanations.

Acne breakouts: neonatal acne

According to the AAP, neonatal acne occurs in 30% of newborns and commonly appears between the first two to four weeks of life.

These types of breakouts usually happen with boys and disappear after three months.

However, after a baby has exited the neonatal stage, they are still susceptible to developing infantile acne, which is less common and usually triggered via an inflammatory response.

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Heat rash

Heat rash –otherwise known as miliaria rubra– is very common in babies. According to the AAP, heat rash happens when a newborn’s sweat glands are still too small to resist heat and become easily blocked by sweat, causing irritation.

A rash can also occur if your baby is wearing a particular piece of clothing that rubs against or irritates their skin.

Outbreaks from drool or throw-up

The skin-to-skin contact or excess moisture during breastfeeding might also cause your baby to break out in a rash.

Similarly, when your baby spits up after feeding, drool can cause certain outbreaks on your their chin.

How do I treat the red spots on my baby’s face?

According to the AAP, most of these skin conditions —be it red spots or rashes— will likely disappear on their own over the course of a few months.

However, here are a few recommendations on how to soothe breakouts and keep your baby’s skin clean and healthy:

  • Dress your baby accordingly. If it’s hot, make sure they aren’t overdressed and visa versa.
  • Dress them in soft and light cotton clothing.
  • Avoid long-term sun exposure.
  • Keep your baby cool and ventilated.
  • Use gels or creams recommended by your pediatrician.

If your baby’s rash or red spots worsen or persist, talk to your pediatrician so that they can examine your little one and avoid possible infections.

Finally, remember that babies’ skin is most sensitive during their first months of life: the appearance of red spots on a baby’s face tend to be totally normal and easy to treat.

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