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Mysterious cloth-diaper-hating rash

My daughter has had a really aggressive nasty rash/yeast infection for MONTHS. We had seriously tried just about everything to make it go away--different ointments, creams, we took her to a dermatologist, and literally nothing was working. We thought maybe there was some lingering infection clinging to our cloth diapers, so we stripped them, but still no dice.

Two weeks ago, we went away for the weekend, and only took disposables with us, so we wouldn't have to travel with a bunch of diapers. After two days of disposables and Aquaphor (we had forgotten her dermatologist-prescribed rash cream at home) the rash was making drastic improvements. So when we got home, we kept her in disposables and Aquaphor. Two weeks later, it's almost entirely gone.

So, what gives? We love our cloth diapers, and we'll be going back to them as soon as this rash is gone for good, but I am just baffled as to why nothing we tried worked at all until we switched to disposables.

Any ideas?

Edit: I should have added, we use GroVia All-in-Twos, almost exclusively, and Charlie's soap.


Feb. 9th, 2012 02:58 am (UTC)
I had a KILLER yeast problem. It was awful. Took me like 6-12 months to really get to the bottom of it and get it cleared up.

Our routine:
Strip w/Dawn & bleach monthly
Wash every other day with Tide & Grapefruitseed Extract (THIS has made a HUGE difference!)
Use OTC Lotrimin as diaper cream the instant a bump pops up

Sounds like your infant could use some oral antifungals - diflucan I think it's called - for systemic yeast. I would definitely treat that before tackling the diapers or she will just keep reinfecting (recolonizing?) herself.

ETA: I also use old school baby powder with every change to help keep his skin dry. The cornstarch based ones just feed yeast.

Edited at 2012-02-09 02:59 am (UTC)
Feb. 9th, 2012 04:46 am (UTC)
Thanks. She is on antibiotics and some cream now. I'm still waiting on the yeast cultures the dermatologist took, but she did test positive for an infection. It did really get bad in her arm pit and back of the knee originally (she is healing quite well now), but I'll have to look into non corn based powders like you said.
Feb. 9th, 2012 05:09 am (UTC)
Poor thing! :( Hope she heals up well.

We got some Nystatin powder prescribed which worked the BEST - but it's prescription only and a tiiiiiny bottle. There is an OTC product available called something like X-orb that is also a non-cornstarch antifungal powder. It's not cheap, but it did work very well. I just had to be super careful about not using too much or it would irritate my son's skin (and he is not a sensitive skinned kid).
Feb. 9th, 2012 05:37 am (UTC)
My friend who has chubby babies (mine are thin so I am so confused) raves about the powder. I actually prefer prescription, because I have full coverage so that might work much better for us :) And no worries, my baby is happy as a lark. She just looks awful. She was wiggling around all giggles on the exam table when it was so bad it looked like a chemical burn. I do need to do more research about preventative. This doctor made a face when I mentioned cloth diapers and said "well hopefully you won't have to do that." She isn't what I'd call a good listener either, but her Rx have been healing the babes so far so I figured I'd finish this round with her and look for someone better another time.
Feb. 9th, 2012 09:03 pm (UTC)
I have full coverage too, the Nystatin is only like $5 a pop, so not bad - it's just ANNOYINGLY small for how often I found myself using it. :) Something in a bigger container worked better for us!

That's too bad about your doc. My pediatrician just sort of blindly assumed that cloth diapers = problem free skin! which created it's own set of problems when we started with the yeast thing... it would have been helpful if she had known that it is a relatively common issue. =/ Instead I had to parse it out myself with months of trial and error and emailing various cloth diaper websites/detergent manufacturers.
Feb. 9th, 2012 05:02 pm (UTC)
Does the grapefruitseed extract clog up your machine? We have a very finicky HE washer and while I love it, it's a bit annoying that it becomes clogged easily.
Feb. 9th, 2012 07:58 pm (UTC)
You can get it in liquid form, so that shouldn't clog your machine.
Feb. 9th, 2012 09:01 pm (UTC)
I've never had an issue... I dilute it though. I put 12 drops in a half cup of water (I use an old breast milk storage cup I just keep on my washer) and put it in the bleach dispenser for my actual wash load (after the 1st cycle of just a "normal" wash with no detergent). We have an older LG TROMM.
Feb. 11th, 2012 09:22 pm (UTC)
Whats the deal with grapefruit seed extract? I'm intrigued.
Feb. 12th, 2012 05:09 am (UTC)
It's a natural antimicrobial, like Tea Tree Oil... but TTO seems to lose effectiveness when diluted (like, a few drops in a huge load of laundry) whereas GFSE still works to keep things at bay. :) I bought a bottle of it on Amazon for about eight bucks and it's lasted for more than a year.

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