What can cause crusty scabs on my child's face after a cold?

Impetigo.  Sometimes the skin gets very irritated due to mucous from a runny nose.  Bacteria can take advantage of this irritated skin and start growing.  It frequently causes a honey colored crusty rash.  Oral or topical antibiotics are used to treat this infection.
It sounds like your child may have impetigo—an infection of the skin that is caused by one of two types of common bacteria (staph and strep) that dwell in many people’s noses and on their skin. Classically, these honey-crusted sores are found on the face, often appearing during or after a cold or sinus infection. The excess nasal drainage (not to mention little fingers poking around) increases the likelihood that these nose-dwelling bacteria will spread to surrounding skin. You’ll want to see your pediatrician to confirm the diagnosis and get proper treatment. Topical antibiotic ointment is often used to clear up impetigo, but if there are many lesions, it is spreading, or it keeps recurring despite the use of an ointment, oral antibiotics may be needed to get rid of the infection.
Mommy Calls: Dr. Tanya Answers Parents' Top 101 Questions About Babies and Toddlers

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Mommy Calls: Dr. Tanya Answers Parents' Top 101 Questions About Babies and Toddlers

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------The must-have resource for parents of children up to age three! Small enough to fit in a diaper bag, but big on...

Continue Learning about Cold and Flu

Cold and Flu

Cold and Flu

Colds and flu are both viral infections, but have different symptoms. With a cold you will have symptoms such as a runny nose or a sore throat. Flu symptoms come on suddenly and may include fever, body aches or vomiting. While the...

re is no cure for either, there are treatments -- chicken soup, nasal sprays, rest -- which can help your feel better.

Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.