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Help Your Baby Feel Better


The most common type ("atopic dermatitis") produces a red, itchy rash with bumps -- most often on the cheeks, scalp, and forehead -- that can ooze with fluid. It occurs most often in babies prone to allergies; it's not contagious and won't leave scars.

Peak age: First symptoms surface between 2 and 6 months and often disappear (or lessen) from a few months later to 3 years.

What to do: Apply moisturizing lotion and give your baby only short baths in lukewarm water. If a rash oozes, call your doctor, who may prescribe a steroid cream.

For moderate to severe cases, a new class of prescription ointments called topical immuno-modulators -- TIMs for short -- has been shown to clear up the condition most of the time. They don't have the potential side effects of steroids.