Major Diaper Rash & Pooping Often

african american mother changing baby's diaper
A mother changes her baby's diaper. (Image: michaeljung/iStock/Getty Images)

In young children, a major diaper rash is often accompanied by an increased number of stools. Diarrhea causes more bowel movements; there are several reasons your child could be experiencing diarrhea. Consult your doctor if your child’s bowel movements and diaper rash are not better within two days, if your child is dehydrated or if the problems get worse.

Identification

It’s normal for an infant to have up to 10 stools per day and this number will gradually decrease as your child gets older. If stools become more frequent, loose and runny, this signifies diarrhea from a viral or bacterial infection. If you’ve recently introduced milk products to your child, increased stool frequency or diarrhea can indicate a milk protein allergy, the Dr Paul website explains. Lactose intolerance can also cause an increase in the number of your child’s stools. If the frequent bowel movements are accompanied by a fever, vomiting and cold-like symptoms, rotavirus may be the culprit. Frequent bowl movements increase your child’s risk of a diaper rash, which causes all or parts of the area covered by his diaper to be tender with a red rash.

Causes

The rotavirus is common during the winter and spring and can be spread quickly at day-care centers and children’s hospitals. This virus is spread through feces. If your child touches a contaminated object then puts his hands in his mouth, he can become infected with the virus. Milk protein allergies are caused by the immune system overreacting to milk products, which causes your child to have an allergic reaction. Lactose intolerance occurs if your child is unable to break down lactose in milk. The increased number of bowel movements can irritate your child’s skin and result in a diaper rash. Dietary changes can also increase the number of your child’s stools, which can then lead to diaper rashes.

Treatment

If your child has diarrhea, stick to an easily digestible diet of bananas, rice, apple sauce, toast and yogurt, AskDrSears.com suggests. Have your child take small and frequent sips of oral rehydration solution to decrease his risk of dehydration. If you breastfeed, breastfeed often, since this comforts a sick child and also helps with hydration. Have your child drink plenty of fluids, but avoid apple, pear and cherry juice. If diarrhea is severe, your child may need admitted to a hospital to receive fluids intravenously. To treat diaper rash while your child has increased bowel movements, keep the diaper area clean and dry; change diapers often. Apply hydrocortisone cream, zinc oxide or a cream with vitamins A and D, MayoClinic.com recommends. If the increased bowel movements and diaper rash are caused by lactose intolerance or milk allergies, remove dairy products from your child’s diet. If you’re breastfeeding, cut dairy from your diet, too.

Prevention

Rotavirus is the most common cause of diarrhea in children under 5 years old, so vaccinating your child with RotaTeq or Rotarix can greatly reduce the risk of this virus, the KidsHealth website reports. Teach all your children to wash their hands frequently to reduce the spread of viruses and bacteria that cause diarrhea. Milk protein allergies often disappear with age, but in the meantime, your child should avoid dairy products. Children with milk protein allergies and lactose intolerance can drink soy milk or use soy-based formula. Prevent diaper rashes by changing your child’s diaper frequently and avoiding over-tightening the diaper. Rinse your baby with water and pat him dry with a towel. Always use a diaper rash ointment during diaper changes so there’s a protective barrier between the stools and your child’s skin.

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