Nappy dermatitis results in red patches developing on the surface of the skin (a rash). The whole nappy area could become red and inflamed too. The skin may feel warm or hot to the touch and appear quite sore.
A case of mild nappy rash may not be painful or sore, but if severe, will likely be very uncomfortable, especially if spots, pimples (white or red) and blisters form as well as a moist rash. These spots, pimples or blisters can spread into the folds of the skin due to infection. Babies can become very distressed in severe nappy rash cases.
How to tell the difference between nappy rashes
- Is the nappy rash red, but not bright red? In this case, only a sting when the nappy area is wet will be felt. The redness may not reach into the folds of the skin. Inflammation usually clears within a few days.
- Is the nappy rash bright red? This is usually as a result of a fungal infection. Inflammation can extend into the folds of the skin where fungus can grow too. Spots located further out on the buttocks may also be present.
- Is the nappy rash bright red, very warm to the touch and the area swollen? This occurs as a result of a bacterial infection, often accompanied by fever.