What causes baby acne?

In our previous articles we have written about causes of acne and treatments that can tend to it. These articles dealt with acne in adults and now we like to discuss acne in babies. Baby acne is a skin condition that many new-born babies have to deal with. When baby acne appears is varied. Although some new-born babies develop baby acne after a few weeks of birth others are born with baby acne. The good news is that baby acne goes away on its own and cannot cause any harm.

Acne breakouts caused by this short-term skin condition can appears on the face and chest of babies. Similar to adult acne you can identify the symptoms of baby acne which appear in forms of pimples and bumps on the skin of babies. The duration of baby acne is varying and can last anywhere from a few days to couple of weeks.  Baby acne affects 20% of new-born babies and can affects them up to when they turn two months old.

The difference between baby acne and infantile acne

Many parents can have a hard time distinguishing between baby acne and infantile acne. This is primary due to the fact that both conditions have similar symptoms. Although the symptoms are similar you can differentiate between baby acne and infantile acne by when the skin conditions occur.

As we mentioned earlier baby acne is a skin condition that some babies are born with, and others develop within a few weeks of birth. Infantile acne is a skin condition that occurs anywhere between 2 months to 1 year after children are born. Although many symptoms in both conditions are similar such as pimples and bumps, infantile acne can have additional symptoms such as blackheads which baby acne does not have. It is recommended to consult with a medical professional when your child develops infantile acne. Infantile acne does not go away within a short time like baby acne and a medical professional can assist in treating it better.

Let’s look into the root cause of baby acne

In general acne is caused when our pores are clogged. This is the general cause of acne although the exact causes of baby acne are still not clear. Some medical professionals believe baby acne has to do with hormonal changes therefor it can be classified as hormonal acne . These hormonal changes effects babies within the few weeks of their life after birth. These hormonal changes in new-born babies can affects how their skin produces sebum. Sebum is an essential oily substance that our sebaceous glands need to protect the hair and skin. When our sebum produces too much oil our pores get clogged, the results are pimples and bumps on the skin.

Furthermore, the skin of babies is very sensitive as you can imagine. Any substance left too long on their skin such as food, vomit or drool can cause negative consequences due to their sensitive skin.

The areas of body where baby acne can be formed include the cheeks, nose, forehead, chin, scalp and neck. Baby acne can appear on these part of body suddenly or slowly. Initially pimples can appear as dots which are discoloured. These discoloured dots can gradually develop into raised pimples.

The links between breastfeeding and baby acne

The question of if breastfeeding causes baby acne has been raised on various occasions. This is due to the fact that milk from a breastfeeding mother contains hormones which in turn can cause hormonal changes with the baby. Although milk from mother to child can cause baby acne mothers should not stop breastfeeding their babies if baby acne appears. As we have said baby acne is a harmless skin condition that goes away. Furthermore, as your baby grows their bodies can adjust to breastfeeding.

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