Skin Conditions in Children

Young children often get spots and rashes of various types. These may be due to a viral infection, a particular kind of food, or an eczema of some kind. New moles may also show up – some of them stay for good, others fade or disappear.

Below, you will find information on common and more unusual rashes in the skin of your baby or young child.

Spots and rashes caused by viruses

Sudden appearances of spots, blisters or continuous rashes are often due to viral infections. Often – but not always – the child also has other symptoms, such as fever. It might be a case of a well-known childhood disease (see below), but often the cause is concluded to be some kind of unverified virus.

  • Measles, rubella and scarlet fever almost always start off with febrile illness, before any rash appears.
  • Chickenpox begins with a fever, fatigue, and headache. Dots appear initially on the chest, stomach, and back and change after a few hours into blisters that itch and break easily. The blistering rash spreads to the face, scalp, arms, legs, and mucous membranes.
  • Three-day-fever – roseola infantum – can cause a reddish, non-itchy rash right after the fever is gone.
  • Glandular fever often give diffuse disease symptoms – sometimes including fever and skin rashes.
  • Fifth disease usually induces a rash that normally starts in the face, with bright redness on the cheeks, much like after a slap. The rash spreads to the arms and legs where it can form a garland-like pattern.
  • Hand, foot, and mouth disease, (not to be confused with foot and mouth disease in cows) is a viral infection with blisters appearing inside and around the child’s mouth, and sometimes on the hands or feet.

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