What Causes Small Bumps on Baby Face?

It is quite common for a baby's complexion to change a bit from time to time. You may even notice some small red bumps appearing on the smooth, soft face of your baby. While it is natural to feel concerned, you usually do not need to worry because they are rarely serious. In fact, these blemishes may clear up without any treatment. Still, it makes good sense to learn about different causes of noticing those bumps.

Causes of Small Bumps on Baby Face

Most of those blemishes go away without any medical intervention, and that is mainly because they are nothing but a mild form of acne. There could be other reasons too.

1. Baby Acne

As mentioned already, baby acne is a common problem and can cause small, red bumps to appear on your baby's face about 2-4 weeks after birth. Those bumps may be visible on your baby's nose, cheeks, and forehead. What causes baby acne is not clear, but it may have something to do with overall hygiene. Therefore, you may get good results by washing your baby's face daily with a gentle soap.

  • CAUTION! Never try to use any acne products that you use for yourself – they are too harsh for your baby's delicate skin and may do more harm than good. Talk to your doctor if the acne does not go away after several days.

2. Milia

These are tiny bumps usually appearing on your baby's chin, nose or cheek. They look quite similar to acne, but they are usually the result of dead skin flakes becoming trapped in your baby's skin. You usually do not require medical assistance to treat Milia. Wash your baby's face daily using a gentle soap, but avoid lotions and other face products. Never try to pinch the irritated areas.

3. Eczema

Those small bumps on baby face could indicate a skin condition called eczema. It usually develops during the first six months of birth. The condition may continue even when your child gets older. If your baby is up to six months old, you may notice that itchy rash to appear on the forehead, cheeks, and scalp. The rash may move to knees, elbows, and skin creases with time.

While there is no cure available for this skin condition, you can take certain steps to avoid flare-ups. For instance, give your baby short baths, no longer than 5-10 minutes and always use gentle soap only. Ask your doctor about a cream or moisturizer to use during the day. Sometimes, you need to use a steroid ointment to reduce inflammation.

4. Pustule Problems

Your baby may develop pustule problems after birth. You may notice an eruption of pustules on the tummy, face, and back of your baby. The condition affects 30-70% of infants, and is actually quite common. It is a good idea to talk to your pediatrician to confirm if your baby has pustule problems. It usually requires no treatment and goes away in a week or two.

5. Scaly Skin

It usually affects the scalp, but it can also appear on your baby's face and neck. There will be scaly, red patches on your baby's skin. They can be quite itchy and make your baby uncomfortable. The exact cause of this skin condition is not clear, but experts believe that hormones and yeasts have a role to play. Your doctor will confirm if it is actually seborrheic dermatitis or scaly skin, and then recommend a wait-and-watch approach, as it usually goes away on its own.

6. Chicken Pox

The earliest symptoms of chicken pox are nausea, fever, loss of appetite, muscle aches, and headache. Eventually, you will notice small bumps on baby face. These red spots then turn into fluid-filled blisters and spread to other body parts as well. There can be a few of those blisters or there can be so many of them. Talk to your doctor to help manage things in a better way.

When to Worry

You need to understand that because your baby's skin is still immature, it is quite common to notice those harmless blemishes appear from time to time. However, it is true that some dermatological conditions may require serious treatment. For instance, rashes and lesions caused by staph infections, yeast, herpes simplex, and psoriasis require medical treatment.

Sometimes, a viral infection may cause a red rash to appear on the face of your baby. Therefore, it is a good idea to consult with a pediatrician when you are in any doubt. You should seek immediate medical attention if your baby is also running a fever along with the rash. Also, talk to your doctor if your baby seems uncomfortable or does not eat enough.

Baby Skin Care Tips

Your baby's skin is very delicate, and so many things can damage it. Therefore, it is important to take some steps to ensure proper skin care, which may help to prevent small bumps on baby face. For instance:

  • Avoid exposing your baby to direct sunlight for too long. Your child's sensitive skin can easily burn due to direct exposure to the sun. This can even cause permanent damage. However, you should avoid using sunscreen for protection – these products are too harsh for your baby's delicate skin. Instead, use an umbrella, hat, or other protection.
  • Avoid skincare products for your infant. You really do not want to expose that delicate skin to active chemicals. It is also important to avoid using any fragrances or dyes because they can trigger allergic reactions. Be sure to talk to the pediatrician before using any skincare products for your baby.
  • Do not scrub hard while bathing an infant. While your baby will certainly enjoy baths, it is important to be as gentle as possible. Scrubbing too hard can cause all sorts of problems. Also, ensure that you never leave your little one unattended in water, as drowning is always a risk.
  • Massage your baby regularly. A gentle massage can really help improve your baby's sleep and lower stress as well. You can also use that time to establish a bond with your new family member. Avoid massaging vigorously, especially after feeding. 
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