How should I care for my child’s skin while he has rotavirus?

Diana K. Blythe, MD

Because rotavirus causes impressive diarrhea, caring for your child's skin can be difficult. If the skin is not yet raw, use a zinc diaper cream as a barrier between the irritating diarrhea and the sensitive buttock skin. Once the skin is getting red, do not use diaper wipes as they can further bother the skin. Instead rinse off the skin with the bathtub faucet then pat, don't rub, the skin dry before applying the diaper cream. If the skin is getting raw, talk to your doctor about whether an antibiotic cream would help.

Change your child’s diaper often to help prevent diaper rash and other skin problems.

  • Clean the diaper area well with warm water and mild soap.
  • Do not use baby wipes -- they may cause more irritation.
  • You may also want to use protective ointment or cream.

Continue Learning about Viral Infections

Viral Infections

Viral Infections

Viral infections like herpes simplex, respiratory syncytial virus (RSV), chicken pox and rotavirus are infections caused by a virus instead of a bacterium. Viral infections do not respond to antibiotics, but some specific viruses ...

like influenza A and B can be treated with certain antiviral medications. Most commonly, treatment for viral infections includes drinking lots of fluids, getting rest, eating well and letting the illness run its course.

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.