If you are worried about your baby’s dry scalp then you have made the right click. You were so clean and careful with your baby and yet you could not help your baby from getting a ‘”cradle cap” or Infantile Seborrhoeic dermatitis. You wonder where did I go wrong.I assure you that there is no need to panic as this is nothing serious. Nor is it contagious. At the same time, cradle cap is no fun!
Cradle cap occurs to tiny tots below 3 months of age and is nothing alarming. Apart from a dry scalp,a rash may also appear on the eyebrows or ear. This is not due to your ignorance or negligence. Cradle cap is just a natural condition when the baby’s sebaceous glands try to adjust to the world outside. Newborns are not capable of shedding their excess skin even when skin grows rapidly. They take some time to get used to the environment outside the mother’s womb. With Cradle cap, babies have an itchy, patchy dry or oily skin on their scalp which may be thick and crusty. Some babies have cradle cap for years while for some it disappears in a month or a year. You can prevent cradle cap by shampooing the baby’s hair regularly.
Usually, cradle cap disappears on its own and requires no treatment. However, you can try the following to get rid of the rashes and itchiness.
- Apply a small amount of baby oil or any natural oil with your finger tips onto your baby’s scalp. This will soften the skin in a few minutes. Almond oil or olive oil works best for baby skin. After a few minutes try to brush it away with a soft bristled hair brush or a cloth. Do not rub vigorously. Some people are against using oil as it may clog pores.
- You don’t want excess oil build up in your scalp. Use a baby shampoo regularly. If it doesn’t help ask for a medicated shampoo suitable for babies.
- Use a few drops of lavender oil and leave it overnight.
- Take witch hazel in some lukewarm water and apply it with a soft cloth on the baby’s scalp several times a day.
- Treat cradle cap with a mixture of extra virgin olive oil and a few drops of tea tree oil. Tea tree oil with its anti-bacterial properties can help to prevent infection. However, you need to shampoo any trace of oil away.
- Biotin (B-complex) is found to be a useful remedy for itchy scalp. It is recommended that mother’s take adequate quantity of biotin in their daily diet so that the baby gets it through breast milk.
- If your baby has rashes that spreads it may probably be a yeast infection. Ask your pediatrician about an anti-fungal cream.
Dry scalp is not just for babies. It affects people of all ages. If you have dry scalp try to analyze its cause.
- Is it winter time?
- Do you walk around a lot under the dry heat of the sun?
- Do you use any hair products that contain phthalates, sodium lauryl saulfate or betaine?
- Are you hair product crazy? Using all kinds of hair products may create havoc on your skin.
- Do you have any food allergies that you may have forgotten?
After reading these 5 possibilities, you might already have found out the reason why you have an itchy, irritated scalp. Try treating it with a shampoo containing tea tree oil, shea butter or urea for dramatic results!