A few days ago I freaked out when changing Josiah’s diaper. At first I didn’t think much of the reddened skin - he often wakes up after bedtime with a wet diaper, and after getting changed his skin will calm down. This time, I noticed the skin was cracked and bleeding a bit, and there was an oozing sore. An oozing sore on his penis!
Another Bad Mommy moment in my book. I have lots of them. What did I do wrong? My sister-in-law wasn’t the only mother of boys (count ‘em – six) who told me that caring for baby boys would be so much easier than caring for baby girls. You don’t have to worry about cleaning all those folds or wiping from front to back – just wipe and you’re done. HA! This guy’s penis has given me more trouble…!
Shortly after he was born, I noticed… something wrong. I took him to the pediatrician, who calmy assured me that it’s natural for a circumcision to reattach, and that you have to be vigilant about pulling it apart. No one told me! Poor little guy had to get cut again. Luckily, they have a numbing cream for that, and it was more painful for me to watch.
Well, fast-forward to the pediatrician’s office a couple days ago, and I find out he has a yeast infection. Guess it makes sense – warm, moist environment. And yet – Gwen never had a yeast infection! *sigh*
Josiah has been doing so well pooping on the potty, I must have been letting him go too long between diaper changes. I don’t know! Since cloth diapers aren’t as absorbent as disposables, they have to be changed more often. Well, I felt horrible - I put him on the potty all the time, change his diaper each time, what else am I supposed to do?
His pediatrician was going to give me a prescription for an antibiotic, but I already had some for when Gwen had a skin infection a while back and decided to use that even though - according to the doctor – it wasn’t anti-fungal. I’m always trying to figure out natural remedies rather than resorting to drugs, and once I knew it was a yeast infection I figured I could handle it.
When we got home, it was naptime. I cleaned up Josiah, put a bit of the antibiotic on him for good measure, and decided to try expressing a bit of breastmilk onto the area. I’m still nursing, it’s there, and might as well give breastmilk’s antibacterial properties a try. I put him down for his nap without a diaper so he would have good air-circulation. Luckily for me, he woke up dry. PHEW!
Each diaper change since, I’ve put some breastmilk and coconut oil on the area, in addition to adding some apple cider vinegar to his bath. He’s been diaper-free while we’re at home to encourage air-circulation, and it’s so funny how skinny he looks without a diaper. I’m happy to report that he’s healing quite nicely.
A few other natural methods I’ve read to help cure yeast infections:
Plain yogurt – both eaten and topically applied (don’t leave it on the skin, or it might have the opposite effect)
Garlic – ingested or applied, although I just can’t see rubbing garlic on my skin, much less my little guy’s private parts! A couple of my friends swear by GOOT (Garlic Olive Oil Treatment) for their kids’ colds.
Restricted diet – cut out sugar, grains, yeast, and dairy, which can apparently feed the yeast and make it worse.