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Yes, when babies begin to teethe, they often drool more. Excess saliva may run over their lips, cheeks, and chin, which can irritate their skin and cause a teething rash.
You may first notice a teething rash on the sides of your baby’s mouth, chin, neck, chest, and belly. If your baby is teething, you’ll likely also notice other symptoms, such as:1, 2, 3
A teething rash is a kind of eczema or contact dermatitis caused by excess saliva.
Continually wiping saliva away can irritate your baby’s skin. It can also dry it out and strip away the natural oils that keep it healthy.
If your baby has a teething rash, you may notice:
The corners of your baby’s mouth, cheeks, and chin are the first areas to come in contact with excess saliva. They’re the places you’re most likely to notice a teething rash develop.
Saliva can also run over or pool on your baby’s chest and stomach. You may notice red, bumpy, or chapped skin patches in these places, just like the ones near your baby’s mouth.
If your baby uses a pacifier, you may notice a rash in any place that makes contact with the pacifier.
A diaper rash isn’t necessarily related to teething, but it is a similar condition and may co-occur. Like a teething rash, a diaper rash is a form of dermatitis (skin inflammation). It’s caused by your baby’s stool irritating the skin on their bottom.
Some medical professionals have associated teething with diarrhea, which can contribute to diaper rash.4 However, seek medical attention if your baby has diarrhea but is not teething.5
You can’t always prevent a teething rash. How often and how much your baby drools and their specific skin sensitivity can make them likely to develop a rash at some point.
You can prevent a rash to some extent, however, by doing the same things you do to treat it:
You can make teething more comfortable for your baby by giving them food or teething toys they can safely bite down on. This can relieve the pressure they feel from the new teeth erupting.
Cold foods and toys work especially well because of the mild numbing effect they provide. Avoid any actual numbing agents, teething toys that can leak, or anything frozen solid.
Holding and comforting your baby will also help them through teething. Try to balance between providing comfort yourself and encouraging your baby to self-soothe.
A teething rash is something virtually every baby will experience, and it generally isn’t anything to worry about. Try the following to reduce or treat it at home:
Use an ointment or emollient for your baby’s rash, as this will provide a barrier between the skin and saliva.6 A lotion will moisturize the skin but won’t protect it.
Avoid using products with fragrances for rashes, as these could make the irritation worse.
Sometimes more severe conditions can look similar to a teething rash. In rare cases, a teething rash can become infected.
If you notice any of the following symptoms, contact your child’s pediatrician:
When a baby’s first teeth come in, an increase in drooling can cause a rash on the face and sometimes other areas. You’re most likely to notice a teething rash around the corners of your baby’s mouth.
While teething rash and teething aren’t a pleasant experience for you or your baby, they’re usually not a cause for concern. You can comfort your baby as they teethe and minimize the symptoms at home.
Visit your child's pediatrician if you notice more severe symptoms, such as a fever or a rash that leaks fluid.
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