One of the most common conditions a new mother may see on her infant, is baby acne. But while it is startling in so young a child, it’s really not a serious issue, nor should you be overly concerned about the causes or cures.
Some babies when born, may have small red bumps on their face. This is not baby acne, but something called “milia”, which usually disappears in a couple of weeks. On the other hand, the acne will appear around that same two week period, and show itself as small white heads, sometimes surrounded by red, irritated skin on the cheeks, chin, forehead and even the back.
In teenagers and even adults, acne is blamed on hormones and excessively oily skin. To some extent this is true of infants also, with hormones transmitted through the placenta, often being blamed for the facial spots. However, science has no real idea of the cause, and there is normally no treatment for the few weeks a child will have it.
Because the baby acne appears on areas of the face where they may have spit up, rubbed against sheets washed in harsh detergent, or drooled, it can become slightly aggravated, but that extra irritation will go away by changing your laundry soap, and wiping their face with a damp cloth when needed.
It is not advisable to try home remedies such as creams or oil, as these will only irritate the skin further. As a rule, nothing more is needed than washing once a day with mild baby soap. In some cases where the baby acne appears to get significantly worse, your doctor may prescribe a cream or other medication. He will also check at the same time, to see if a breastfeeding mother is taking any medication that may have triggered the acne through her milk.