Parents are usually extra sensitive and careful when it comes to their kids, especially babies. Any small discomfort to their little ones is enough to warrant an immediate visit to the doctor. Every ailment of the babies is critical for parents, and they may panic seeing their baby in even little pain. However, this panic can be avoided if parents know and understand the details of the illness or ailment, its symptoms, and preventive measures. One such infection is folliculitis, which can be controlled and treated with home remedies in its initial stages.
Folliculitis, as the name suggests, is an inflammation or infection commonly occurring in the hair follicles. Acne-like red bumps or rashes characterize this infection at the base of the hair follicle, which may be accompanied by itching. The rashes or tiny pouches can have pus, and may even be mildly painful. This common infection usually occurs in the hair follicles of arms, legs, buttocks and thighs.
Folliculitis is usually caused by a bacterial infection, and in most cases, it is cured by itself in a few days (7 to 10 days). However, in some cases, the rashes can turn into boils, which require an antibiotic course as treatment.
Folliculitis is caused by an infection happening due to pathogenic microorganisms entering the skin, such as the bacteria Staphylococcus aureus, viruses, or fungi such as yeast, which dwell on the skin. These microorganisms are usually harmless; however, when there is a or bruise, they enter the skin and cause infections such as folliculitis.
A few causes of folliculitis in a child are:
Folliculitis looks like red rashes, or acne-like bumps. These rashes or bumps develop into furuncles gradually, which are pus-filled boils. Sometimes, when many hair follicles get infected, they form carbuncles, which are large painful bumps or swellings with many pus-discharging boils. This is an indication of a deep-layer infection, and may cause a fever.
Some of the common symptoms of folliculitis in children are:
As folliculitis looks like rashes or acne, people can sometimes get confused and might take one for the other. There are many kinds of skin infections caused by different things that may have similar symptoms. So, an accurate diagnosis of folliculitis can be made by a doctor only. After a thorough physical examination of the skin and its condition, a doctor diagnoses the infection and prescribes the treatment. Usually, just a physical assessment is enough. However, in a few cases, where there is discharge from the boils, the doctor may ask for a laboratory culture test or examination of the discharge to determine the infective microorganism accurately.
In children who have strong immunity, folliculitis tends to go away by itself in a period of seven to ten days. If the rashes or bumps turn into carbuncles or boils in some cases, then the parents need to consult a doctor for folliculitis infant treatment. Below are the treatment options the doctor may prescribe for the children with folliculitis:
Parents are the main source of care and comfort for a child suffering from folliculitis. The doctor prescribes the treatment, but the parents are the ones who perform their home care, and can thus ensure a speedy recovery for their child. Some home care advice that can help in the speedy healing of folliculitis in children are:
Natural remedies may be considered, in order to relieve the folliculitis symptoms in children. However, do remember to take your child’s doctor’s advice before choosing a home remedy to try. Some natural remedies to treat folliculitis in babies and kids are:
Tea tree oil is known for its antimicrobial properties that may help prevent bumps and pus caused by folliculitis. However, pure tea tree oil is strong for kids, so remember to dilute it with other natural oils such as almond or coconut oil before applying it to your child’s soft skin.
Neem leaves are also known for their antibacterial, antifungal, and antiviral properties. They can be boiled in water, and then the strained water, or a paste of boiled neem leaves, can be applied on the affected areas. Do remember to cool the paste or neem water!
Apple cider vinegar is known for its antimicrobial effect on the Staphylococcus aureus bacteria, which is responsible for causing folliculitis. Apple cider vinegar, mixed with two parts of water, is applied to the affected area, left for 10 minutes, and then rinsed off.
Aloe vera gel is known for its antiviral and anti-inflammatory properties to reduce the inflammation and itching caused due to folliculitis. Fresh aloe vera gel extracted from the aloe vera plant can be applied to infected areas. It should be left for 10 minutes, and then the area should be rinsed off with warm water.
Several researchers have found that turmeric is effective against the Staphylococcus aureus bacteria. Apply a paste of turmeric with water on the affected area, leave it for 20 minutes, and then rinse off completely.
Parents often worry about their kid who is at risk of getting folliculitis easily if he plays outside in dust and mud, or gets hurt frequently. Parents can easily prevent folliculitis in their children by taking these precautions:
1. Ensuring a daily bath and clean clothes
2. Regular hand-washing, especially after play
3. Cleaning cuts and bruises immediately with antiseptic lotion, and applying bandages to cover them
4. Disinfecting and cleaning the bathtub regularly
5. Swimming in hygienic pools
6. Keeping the kids away from adults suffering from folliculitis
7. Using separate towels, combs, blankets, etc.
8. Avoiding tight clothes
The child should be taken to a doctor if the folliculitis doesn’t heal itself in a few days, or is not subsisting after following self-care measures. Immediate medical consultation should be sought if the infection spreads to other body parts, or the rashes start oozing pus. When the bumps are itchy or painful, or the child has a large red area with multiple pus-discharging boils, it is time to visit the doctor.
Folliculitis is a common occurrence in kids, and it usually gets cured by itself in a few days with proper precautions. However, it can become severe if not treated properly. Identifying the symptoms at the nascent stage and taking proper treatment are important to ensure it doesn’t become severe.
This post was last modified on January 27, 2021 7:10 pm
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