When a baby is born, every parent hopes that their infant is perfectly fine. However, there are some cases wherein parents notice some white spots on the face of their baby. This can create a panic towards the parents, but experts say that this is not an immediate concern. This article will provide you every information you need about the white spots on the face of your baby. Including the treatment as well as how it can be prevented.
What are milia?
According to the recent statistics from the Center for Disease Control, almost 50 percent of infants in the United States are born with milia. Milia is known to be a small, white spot that appears on the face of a baby. This usually lasts for a few weeks on newborns, but it is possible for adults to have them too. It is known to be cysts on the skin which is also known as a milk spot. These white spots may appear on the cheeks, nose, and chin. Milia or milium may be cysts but they are harmless according to experts. These white spots are filled with an element known as keratin. They may appear to be around 1-2mm and the color varies on the baby’s skin color. In some cases, they are neither white or yellow, instead, they turn red that is caused by irritation.
Different types of milia
Every baby’s case is unique, even children and adults get them. This is why it is ideal for parents to figure out what type of milia their child has. With newborns, there are two types of milia that are categorized based on age and appearance.
Juvenile milia – this particular type of milia usually appears just a few days after birth or even after a few months. Experts say that they are commonly linked to certain medical conditions such as basal cell nevus syndrome as well as gardener syndrome.
Neonatal milia – this other type of milia that can be seen on babies who are just a few weeks old. They do not usually last long but may come back when they are older. Pediatricians believe that this type of milia does not pose any threat to a newborn child’s health. It is common for a baby to have these white spots on his or her face. A common misconception states that it is due to the mother’s diet during pregnancy, but it has been proven to be untrue. It is also believed that a mother’s breastmilk can cause it, but this has been proven to be just a misconception. It is best to consult your doctor if you have any questions or concerns about your diet while breastfeeding.
What causes milia on babies?
It may appear out of nowhere, which often leads to parents panicking. Based on research, it is merely a skin condition that develops when dead skin gets trapped. A newborn baby’s skin is also still very sensitive. So when the part of the skin known as sebaceous glands does not come off naturally, it gets blocked. These glands are responsible for producing oil on the skin.
When dead skin cells get trapped with oil. This will clog the pores, which is pretty common for adults as well
Symptoms, diagnosis, and treatment
Milia do not indicate any other symptoms aside from the appearance of the white spots on the face of the baby. However, it can cause some itchiness for older children. There are also no specific tests required in order to find out if a baby has milia. This is because milia can already be recognized just by the appearance of the cysts.
Parents usually get worried about these white spots, but so far, there is no treatment for it because it does not last long. Milia goes away after just a few weeks and does not normally affect the skin of a baby in a major way. Adults who have milia must undergo a surgical procedure for it to be removed because unlike in babies, it does not go away on its own.
If you notice that your baby might feel a little discomfort on their face because of it, experts suggest washing the baby’s face at least twice a day with warm water. Use mild cleanser made for infants. Your baby’s sensitive face might get even more irritated if you use cleansers that are not meant for infants. Gently wipe their face to dry.
Milia are known to go away on its own in just a few weeks, but if you want it to go away sooner, you may try some of these home remedies that are not harmful to your baby’s face.
The first remedy you can try is by dipping a soft cloth on the warm water. Squeeze the excess water out before applying it to your baby’s skin. Be sure that the water is not too hot otherwise, you might burn your baby’s face. If you repeat this twice or thrice a day for a couple of days, it will dry out the white spots and will most likely go away sooner.
It is also advisable to scrub your baby’s face with an all-natural scrub. Make the scrub yourself by simply soaking almonds on hot water for a couple of hours before grinding it. Mix it with warm milk before applying to your baby’s face.
How to prevent it?
There are a few ways that you can try to prevent milia.
- Keep your baby’s face clean
- Avoid touching or pinching the cheeks
- Apply lotion or oils that are appropriate for babies.
When to see the doctor?
You can always consult with your pediatrician if you are worried about the white spots that appear on your baby’s face. However, this condition is not contagious, but it can spread. If ever the white spots do not go away after a couple of weeks, or if the skin is getting even more irritated, it is the best time to go back to your pediatrician.