Switching Formula....a Strange rash...and Baby Dandruff???

Updated on October 25, 2006
A.M. asks from Lewisville, TX
11 answers

I have 2 questions. The first pertains to switching formula. I previously asked about brands and types of formulas to add into my 5 mo old's breastfed diet. I was giving him soy because I thought it might be he easiest to digest and based on all the responses I received, I've decided to switch to Good Start. Am I supposed to switch it gradually(like when switching dog foods??) or can I start the new formula right away? How will I know if he's allergic to dairy? I only give him 2-3 ounces every 24 hrs in addition to his breastmilk. I do this because I learned that keeping him full and well fed during the day causes him to eat less at night, thus he sleeps longer through the night. So, should I pour half of the new and half of the old? Or am I not supposed to mix formulas??

My 2nd question pertains to a strange rash that I noticed for the first time today. My son has never been one to get diaper rashes and today I noticed little red bumps on his inner thighs and scrotum area. I'm not sure if its insect bites or the beginnings of a diaper rash. I went ahead and soaked him in a warm bath for a good 30 minutes and applied Dr Smiths before putting on his diaper. I hope it goes away! Could it be an allergic reaction to something or is just a plain ol diaper rash?

Oh and ONE more question. Sorry. :/ Is it obvious I'm a new mom??? My son was born with a good head of hair. Lately I noticed some dry scalp and dandruff. Am I washing his hair too often? Or not enough? Is it the shampoo? I use Johnson and Johnson no tears baby shampoo.

My mom passed away a year ago and my son is the 1st baby in our family so I don't really have anyone to ask. We just moved to Dallas and I'm in the process of geting a new pediatrician so I apologize for bombarding ya'll with questions. You guys give such good answers that I just couldn't help myself! :)

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D.D.

answers from Dallas on

My now 5 month old had terrible cradle cap. I tried dandruff shampoos and cradle cap treatments but they didn't work. What finally worked was massaging oil into his scalp and taking a fine toothed comb and combing his scalp. If you do this for a week everyday it will help.

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S.M.

answers from Dallas on

Hi!

Congrats on new baby :)

About the bumps - if they're small and "beefy" then it's probably a yeast rash as opposed to a diaper rash. Yeast rash (infection) needs to be treated differently than a diaper rash. You'll know it's yeast if it spreads quickly, and moves on to his stomach, and upper thigh area. Also do a google search for "infant yeast infection pictures" , there are a lot of pictures of it on the web, it'll help you to identify it easier. Because you mentioned it on his upper thighs - it's probably yeast. Or - depending on what he was wearing yesterday, it could be a simple heat rash. If it's a heat rash, it'll go away almost as quickly as it showed up.

With the formula, you should introduce it gradually, you can start w/ a ratio of 1/3, then 1/2, then 3/4. Although, we have done complete transitions (meaning full replacement) w/ many formulas when we realized our children were allergic to a paticular kind.

The dandruff is called cradle cap, and it's very common in babies and toddlers. All 4 of mine had it. We tried everything!!! We've tried baby oil, olive oil, lotion, special shampoos, etc. The only thing I've found that worked well is a shampoo we found at Whole Foods (and Sprouts if you're near Plano) called California Baby - that stuff was a life saver! It's pricey - it's about $9 a bottle, but they have such little hair that it'll be a while b/4 you go through the whole bottle. My 3rd child had it the worst, until he was about 3 years old - that's when we discovered the California Baby and it finally made it go away. We used it for him and his younger brother (who was about 1 at the time) and it cleared both of them right up! My older 2 had to deal w/ all the weird lotions and oils, lol, but they did eventually grow out of it!

I'm very sorry to hear about your mom passing! It must be very hard for you to not have her with you while you are learning to become a mother yourself.

If you are near Garland, I have a great dr on Saturn and Northwest Hwy who see's all 4 of my kids. He is awesome and has been the 1st person to identify some of their issues. I'm very picky (we've been through about 10 pedi's in the past 10 years), and Dr Parker (who is actually a family practicioner) is the only person I feel comfortable taking my kids to. He sees our whole family actually. His staff is wonderful, my kids just adore him and his nurse!

Hugs and Prayers to you!

--S.

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B.S.

answers from Dallas on

Sounds like you got some great advice. I just thought I would add that olive oil on the scalp is a great way to allevieate cradle cap. Just put some on his head, let is soak for a couple of minutes, comb it gently, then wash. You should wash his hair about every other day, not every day, and that should help it go away. Olive oil is natural and easy to come by, most babies don't have sensitivities to it.

So sorry about the loss of your Mother. I am also without family in this area, so I know how hard it can be. The blessing of it all is that these Mamas are so generous with their time and advice. Never hesitate to ask the questions, you will surely get what you need.

Best wishes!!

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N.P.

answers from Dallas on

Alexandra, we use Melaleuca products which take care of all your situations. The yeast is best treated with one of our bath bars(which have tea tree oil in them - kills bacteria and fungus safely) along with our Renew lotion. Our baby shampoo is great for sensitive scalps because it doesn't have harsh chemicals like formaldehyde which others like Johnson and Johnson have. (on your bottle it will be listed as Quaternium 15, this is a code name for formaldehyde. It is in your baby wipes too). www.melaleuca.com
Let me know if you have questions. N. [email protected]____.com

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C.R.

answers from Dallas on

Hi, I am a mom of a teenage boy and a three year old girl! LOL

The formula change is trial and error-as long as your baby isn't allergic to anything that you know of, I say try Good Start, and just see how it goes. He will let you know if he doesn't like it!

The rash may be diaper rash or it may be a yeast infection, depending on what it looks like. Is it tons of tiny little bumps, some white? You may want to call your pediatrician's nurse and explain the rash to him/her. They may have an over the counter suggestion so you don't have to pay a visit to them. For diaper rash, Boudreaux's Butt Paste is good (love that name!) and so is Balmex.

As far as the dandruff goes, it may be cradle cap. Look it up online and it will tell you what you need to do to treat. Almost every baby gets it at one time or another, and my daughter's lasted to some extent until she was two! My dr. said that is not uncommon.

Good luck!

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R.N.

answers from Dallas on

That's so funny-that was what I asked when switching-like dog food! The GI dr says always mix formulas and wait 2 weeks before you can expect to see a definite improvement (evidently remnants stay in the GI tract that long). Glad you chose Good Start.

As far as the dairy allergy, the GI wanted me to pump for two weeks and feed a special formula called Neocate (which costs a fortune) for two weeks to look for signs of improvement. They told me this was the only way to know for sure. I refused thinking that he would wean if taken off for 2 weeks! Turns out that my son is allergic/intolerant to the casein part of the milk protein. So, he comes up negative on allergy tests, but gets a SEVERE diaper rash if he drinks milk. Like so bad it blisters from the burns. Which leads to your next ques...I don't know if the rash could possibly have anything to do w/it...my son's started at 10 months when I tried yogurt for the first time. Now, he can tolerate very small amounts of milk-containing products each day and uses rice milk.

The cradle cap sounds nirmal at that age as they start to get their real hair! : ) Just comb it a lot. I found the aveeno creamy wash (w/the navy blue cap) worked real well.

R.

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S.W.

answers from Dallas on

Alexandra

I am a dermatology PA so I hope I can help. His diaper rash sounds like it may be an infection with candida, which is a common pathogen for diaper dermatitis. Keep him as dry as possible (no 30 minute soaks in the bathtub) and apply an over the counter miconazole.

For the flaky scalp, it sounds like baby seb derm. Using an over the counter Nizoral shampoo should do the trick. If the diaper dermatitis does not clear within a few days, I would be happy to see him in the office. I am located at Dallas Presby, at North Dallas Dermatology ###-###-####

On the formula issue, why do you think your baby has a milk allergy? Know that lactose is very essential for brain development, and soy does not contain lactose (breast mild is chalk full of it!) So, unless you baby has a TRUE milk allergy, I would not go for the soy formula!

On another note, I have a baby boy born the same day! I am working with some other moms on putting together a play group - you are welcome to join!

S.

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A.

answers from Dallas on

Hi Alexandra. I am a mom of two wonderful, extremely active, children- a son whi is 3 yrs old and a daughter who is 8 months. Just wanted to give a little background and credibility.

I was fortunate that my son took any formula- so I used Parent's Choice. It was awesome, and less expensive. However my daughter spit up so much on anything. I finally found Good Start so I suggest Good Start. I did not nurse or breastfeed either child so I am not an expert on switching from breastmilk to formula; however, I did have to do a lot of trying different formula for my daughter. I went the cold turkey method. She liked anything I gave her (and believe me, she has tried everything!). It was just trying to get the spitting up under control. She did the best on Soy (Parent's Choice Soy) for the first 6 months. I wanted to get her on a cow-based formula so she was ready for milk at 12 months (I stop the bottle and formula at 12 months). She took very well to the Good Start and I wish I had found this in the beginning. She doesn't spit up at all anymore. YEAH! So again, I went cold turkey and just gave her the new formula- no mixing or gradual. No sure if it is right or wrong but it worked for her.

For diaper rash- Budreaux's Buttpaste is the best. Also if you bath your child in a little bit of Aveeno's Oatmeal bath, it is very soothing. My son was one who never got diaper rash but my daughter had one for the first 5 weeks of life.

And lastly for the dandruff- use a little Selson Blue- but be careful not to get it in the eyes. My son had this also (although neither of my children had much hair- actaully I am still waiting on my daughter to get hair!)

I hope this helps!

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K.R.

answers from Dallas on

#1 - Don't know...I'll let someone else catch that one.
#1 - It's probably a rash and the very best thing that you can do for him is fresh air. Lay out some changing pads or towels or whatever and let your little man play naked for a good 30 minutes to an hour. Don't forget to turn up the temperature in your home. He'll love it and it will help the rash heal much faster, but just expect and be prepared for him to pee pee... several times. Also, make sure you change that diaper frequently and opt for a washcloth and warm soapy water rather than the wipeys, which contain alcohol and can aggravate the rash. Lastly, I LOVE Beaudroux's Butt Paste for rash treatment and only use the Desitin (or similar cream) for overnight prevention/barrier. I find those worthless for treatment of rashes. If the rash doesn't really start healing up in three or four days, go to the pediatrician.
#3 - What you see is cradle cap and it is completely normal. You can massage his little scalp gently with baby oil prior to bathtime and much of it will wash away. You can also gently brush his scalp with the baby brush while his hair is dry to remove some flakes. After a couple of weeks the cradle cap should be mostly gone, if it gets worse...go see the pediatrician.

Good Luck!

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M.F.

answers from Dallas on

Our pediatricians say to just make the switch cold turkey.

As far as the rash, keep it protected with something that forms a barrier from wetness -- Budreaux's Butt Paste is great (and the name makes us giggle), but Balmex, Desitin, A&D are all fine. Some people say one works better than the other. You'll have to do your own trial and error to see which works best for your boy (Balmex was great for my daughter, but Desitin is good for my son). Your main goal is to keep it dry. You might change his diaper more frequently for a day or two.

If it's yeast, it will get worse. It could look "beefy" or just raw. Lotrimin AF takes care of the yeast rashed for my son. You can buy it over the counter, where things like athlete's foot medicines are located. Put it on at least 4 times a day or at every diaper change.
If it's raw looking, and he cries when you use a baby wipe, put away the wipes until it's clear and use a warm washcloth to wipe him, or get the Kleenex Viva paper towels (dip them in warm water for a sort of homemade baby wipe).

For cradle cap - it's normal and temporary. But it sure is annoying! For ours, I would use the soft baby hairbrush to massage baby oil into the scalp. Then let it sit there for 10 minutes or so. Maybe do it just before a feeding. After it sits for a while, wash his hair with baby shampoo and massage his scalp with the baby hair brush under the running water (I did this in the kitchen sink). This worked for us, so we never had to hunt for special shampoos.

Hope this helps.

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K.R.

answers from Dallas on

Just some more info on cradle cap: http://www.babycenter.com/refcap/baby/babyills/babyrash/8...
Hope that helps. My 8 mon old has a crazy rash right now too, what's helped her is actually Purelan or some other type of medication typically used for cracked nipples, its really seemed to do the trick.
I don't know what area you live in but I'm always looking for new mom friends too. I have a DD that is 8 months and I'm due with my second DC April 2007. Feel free to send me a PM.

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