Teething Rash: Causes, Symptoms, Pictures, 7 Top Treatments

By Paula McLaren •  Updated: 03/15/22 •  8 min read  •  Baby » Baby Care

Lots of drool. An emerging tooth. Irritable baby. Red blotchy skin.

Is this a teething rash?

Or could it be something else? An infection perhaps?

What Causes A Teething Rash?

Dr. Anna Leah Grossberg, a pediatric dermatologist and assistant professor of Dermatology at Johns Hopkins repeats that, essentially, a teething rash is a form of eczema

“It’s a contact dermatitis caused by the moisture of your baby’s drool” she says.

Constant wiping and rubbing away drool using their hands or teething toys will strip sensitive skin of natural oils which causes irritation and dryness in a never-ending cycle.

Symptoms Of A Teething Rash

Symptoms of a teething rash include:

Where Do Teething Rashes Appear?

A teething rash can appear anywhere around your baby’s mouth, chin, neck and chest.

There may also be a rash on their bottom if your baby has swallowed a lot of saliva.

This is because the enzymes in your baby’s drool may irritate the digestive system and result in mild diarrhoea.

Teething Rash Pictures

So, what does a teething rash look like?

Here are a few teething rash pictures to help you visualise what a rash caused by teething and excess drool can appear as:

Teething Rash Images

4 Teething Rash Preventions

Prevention is always better than cure, so if your baby is dribbling a lot then try the following before a rash develops:

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3 Treatments For Teething Rash

If a rash does establish itself resulting in irritated skin then you can:

Vaseline BlueSeal Petroleum Light Hydrating Jelly 100ml with Aloe Fresh, Pack of 4

An essential for every bag, aloe vera jelly will be used all the time! From chapped lips, mild sunburn to dry skin, it will soothe and promote healing for all kinds of minor pains. Trust me, you won't go anywhere without one of these from now on!

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How Long Does A Teething Rashes Last?

Teething rashes can last for a few days or a few months.

They may come and go depending on if your baby is a persistent drooler or if they only drool a lot when they are teething.

It will also depend on how sensitive your baby’s skin is as some babies do seem to be more prone to rashes than others. 

Is It Really A Teething Rash?

Identifying and classifying a rash that occurs at the same time as your baby’s teeth coming through may not be as simple as you think… 

There are lots of reasons why your baby might have a rash.

And a drool rash that is found around the mouth, neck or chest does NOT necessarily have to be caused by emerging teeth…

Some babies are just prone to drooling a lot!

Equally, the appearance of a rash and where it occurs on the body will greatly determine whether it is a teething rash or not.

Here are some other common causes of rashes that your baby can develop around the time they start teething:

Diaper Rash

Some parents swear that their babies develop teething diaper rash when a new tooth comes through.

However, as I mentioned earlier, diaper rashes are more likely to be caused by your baby swallowing a lot of drool from which the enzymes irritate the digestive system and result in mild diarrhoea.

And it is this mild diarrhoea that may cause a mild rash on your baby’s bottom.

Baby Acne

Baby acne is a common rash that occurs on the nose and cheeks of newborn babies and usually disappears within a few weeks or months.

It is not related to teething and is simply caused by blocked hair follicles.

Eczema

Otherwise known as contact dermatitis, eczema is probably the one rash that most closely resembles a teething or drool rash.

And as a teething rash is a type of eczema, this is not surprising!

True eczema is not triggered by teething, and it will appear on other parts of the body such as the arms and legs.

Eczema is often itchy, scaly and crusty and may weep when irritated.

Hand, Foot And Mouth Disease

Hand, foot and mouth disease causes a rash that is found on the soles of the feet and palms of the hand and is accompanied by a fever and sore throat.

It is typically caught from coughs, sneezes and accidental contact with infected faecal matter.

Fifth Disease (Slapped Cheek)

Slapped cheek can cause a rash that appears on the cheeks, legs, arms or buttocks of young children.

It is a viral infection and is associated with mild fever and a runny nose.

Meningitis

A rash caused by meningitis will not usually appear on the face alone and will be accompanied by other defined symptoms.

It is important to know the symptoms of meningitis as, in its viral form, it can be fatal.

Signs and symptoms of meningitis are:

When To See A Doctor About A Teething Rash

It is unusual for teething rashes to become infected BUT it is important to know when a rash requires you to seek medical advice from your doctor or paediatrician. 

As I have already stated, a teething or drool rash on your baby’s skin will NOT be accompanied by a high fever or be petechiae (will not disappear under pressure)…

So if you baby does have a rash and a fever, you should seek medical advice to establish what’s going on.

Along with the teething rash symptoms I mentioned before, you should also consult your paediatrician if your baby’s drool rash is accompanied by any of the following:

And that’s it! That’s everything you need to know about teething rashes!

If you enjoyed this post about teething rashes and if you know of any other parents who would enjoy this content, be sure to give it a share.

And if I have not answered a question about teething rash that you would like to know, drop me an email at [email protected] and I’ll get back to you as soon as I can. 

Thank you for your continued support and until next time, Happy Parenting!

Paula McLaren

Paul Mclaren - Norland Nurse NNEB RSH is the founder of Teething to Tantrums and has been in the child care industry as a Norland Nanny since 1982. Since then, her mission has been to help parents become the best they can possibly be. And each year, she continues to help more families understand their child's development, the trials and joys of parenting and of course, how to care for their little ones.

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