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Newborn Acne - Should I Worry

Newborn Acne—Should I Worry?

Nope. It’s all going to be okay.

Newborn acne may develop on your baby’s face 2-6 weeks after birth, usually on cheeks, nose, or forehead, appearing as small red or white bumps. It can also spread to the shoulders or back.

While it is unclear exactly what causes newborn acne, maternal or infant hormones may be one cause. The good news is that neonatal acne is not itchy or painful and typically clears up on its own in a few weeks or months without any scarring.

If you notice newborn acne, here are things to remember:

  • Never apply acne treatment unless directed to do so by a doctor.

  • Keep the baby's skin clean and away from rough fabrics.

  • Don’t irritate the acne by pinching or squeezing.

  • Wash the baby's skin with lukewarm water and a soft washcloth. If you want a mild soap or soap-free cleanser, ask your pediatrician for recommendations.

  • Be gentle and never scrub the acne.

  • Avoid any lotions, creams, or oily skin care products.

If you are still concerned, reach out to your baby’s healthcare provider or a dermatologist.

One note: if you notice acne on your baby’s face after six weeks, this is probably a different type of skin condition. It could be infantile acne (which will have blackheads), a skin infection caused by something going on inside the body, or eczema. You may need to see a dermatologist to help you figure out what is going on and get the proper treatment.

Tennessee Family Doulas intimately understands the delicate needs of the newborn. We would be honored to come alongside you as you transition home with your new baby. Contact us and learn more about our postpartum support packages.


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