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Baby acne

Some babies get pimples, spots or pustules on their cheeks and nose, which can be a concern for parents.

These outbreaks of baby acne or neonatal acne usually appear between three days of age and two weeks.

They usually get worse before they clear up completely after around six weeks without causing any harm to the baby.

baby acne

Image: Copyright 2007 Interactive Medical Media LLC

Causes of baby acne

Baby acne is common, affecting up to 70% of babies. Although the exact cause is unknown, it’s believed that exposure in the womb to maternal hormones may be responsible.

Some studies suggest the condition is slightly more common in boys.

Does baby acne need treatment?

No treatment or lotions are needed for baby acne.

Don't attempt to pick or squeeze the spots to avoid causing infection.

Make sure all washing and moisturising products used are specifically designed for use on babies.

How is baby acne diagnosed?

No special tests are needed to diagnose baby acne as the rash is usually easily recognised by doctors, midwives and health visitors.

Seeking medical advice

In the first few months of a baby's life, any rash associated with other symptoms, such as raised temperature, poor feeding, lethargy or cough needs to be checked by your GP or health visitor as soon as possible.

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WebMD Medical Reference

Medically Reviewed by Dr Rob Hicks on June 13, 2017

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