Cradle cap is a typical condition for many children. It’s just scale-like areas on the scalp. This disorder is also known medically as childhood seborrheic dermatitis.
When parents notice these flaky, crusty yellow patches on their precious heads, it can be worrying. Affected areas include the scalp, the top of the head, the eyebrows, and the area behind the ears. Even though it can be frightening and ugly to witness, it is essential to realize that it is a relatively normal, harmless, and noncontagious illness. It is possible to treat it with natural and gentle approaches.
Cradle Cap will clear up itself in six to twelve months, but good treatment can speed up the healing. Indeed, with some care, the cradle cap tends to dissolve after a few months.
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What is a cradle cap?
A cradle cap usually appears within the first three months of your baby’s life. It appears as yellow or light orange waxy flakes on your baby’s head.
Although it does not appear to be particularly attractive, it does not harm or annoy your youngster.
Doctors believe that cradle cap develops due to overactive sebaceous glands in the skin caused by hormones delivered to the baby through the placenta during pregnancy. This causes the skin cells on the baby’s scalp to develop quickly. This rate is faster than the rate at which cells fall, resulting in more skin.
It is not contagious because it is not caused by an infection, allergies, or poor hygiene. It may cause some pain to the baby in the summer and should thus be cleaned frequently. Cradle cap is most frequent in infants under three months old, but it can develop at any age up to roughly a year.
The simplest and safest way to treat this is to apply a small amount of baby oil to your baby’s scalp. Please wait a few minutes for the oil to soften and loosen the scales before removing them with a comb or brush. You might try using mild baby shampoo to cleanse your kid’s scalp frequently.
However, in the cold, this may not be a good idea. This usually improves with time, but if it persists, your doctor may recommend a medicated shampoo or cradle cap lotion to be applied to the scalp. If you press the comb against your baby’s skull, you may notice gaps between the craniums. As a result, try to remove the layer gradually. An unwelcome lump or bruise might lead to difficulties that you can easily avoid.
What are the signs and symptoms?
Cradle Cap causes yellowish, spotty, oily, scaly, and crusty skin rashes on the affected area. The rashes appear on the scalp of newly born neonates and are commonly visible around the ear, brows, or eyelids.
Most typically, it begins within the first three months of the baby’s birth. The same skin problem may manifest itself in other areas as well.
If the disease is not treated immediately, it will deteriorate and will be harmful to the infant. In particular, if the cradle cap spreads, thickens, or becomes itchy, parents should seek medical assistance right away because this might result in mouth or ear infections.
The color of the cradle cap is one indicator that parents should look for. Suppose the wound becomes red and the skin begins to split. In that case, it is critical to get medical assistance right away since bacteria can utilize the damage as a breeding environment.
In contrast, mild cases, such as those caused by overactive sebaceous glands, can be treated with gentle washing and home treatments administered by the child’s parents. For mild cases of cradle cap, lotion and petroleum jelly are the most commonly used treatments. Parents should wash their child’s hair regularly, and the scales should be brushed off with a gentle brush.
Mineral oil or olive oil can also be beneficial in that it loosens the scales or crust, allowing the parents to use a soft brush to remove the flakes more effectively. To further treat the infant, the majority of pediatricians suggest medicated shampoos containing salicylic acid.
For fungal infections that cause skin ailments, a doctor’s prescription for Clotrim or Miconazole Nitrate is required. These medications are typically prescribed for athlete’s foot, jock itch, and yeast infections, among other things.
Best cradle cap treatments
Cradle cap treatment is a pretty risk-free option that you may wish to consider. First, massage baby oil into the afflicted areas of the scalp for ten to fifteen minutes before washing it off. To make it simpler to remove the scales and flakes, warm water should be applied.
This cradle cap treatment should be used before shampooing to ensure maximum effectiveness. If you leave the oil on your baby’s skin for an extended period, it may form a thick layer of buildup that can clog pores and irritate the skin even more.
We certainly do not want the baby to experience any unnecessary discomfort during the procedure. Use a soft-bristled toothbrush to help remove any loose patches of scale after shampooing to make the process more efficient. Keep in mind to be compassionate and to draw on your own parental experience. In situations like these, it is better to do a little less than to do a little too much.
If your baby is not responding well to the cradle cap treatment described above, it may be time to take them to the doctor. In the vast majority of cases, this is not essential.
Especially when they are at that stage of development where they cannot communicate, the fact that they can tell you how they are feeling would be immensely comforting. Consequently, if you believe it would be prudent to have them examined by a medical professional, you should do so.
Most of the time, a cradle cap does not require treatment if it does not appear to be harming your child. The majority of the time, it will go away on its own by the age of one.
Home remedies for cradle cap
You can try numerous different home remedies for cradle caps that are entirely safe for your baby. Some of the most popular home treatments for cradle caps include the following:
The most straightforward and most efficient home remedy for cradle caps is to clean your baby’s scalp with a washcloth or your fingers to loosen scales and make it easier to remove them.
Apply cold-pressed vegetable oil to your baby’s scalp and massage it gently. Wait fifteen minutes and then gently comb your baby’s hair to remove any flakes that have formed. Remove the oil from your baby’s scalp by rinsing it off.
In addition, using a dandruff shampoo, such as the Selsun Blue, to wash your baby’s head can prove to be beneficial.
Another excellent home cure is to apply a tiny bit of baby oil to your baby’s scalp and massage it gently. Using a toothbrush, carefully scrape away the dried skin from the scalp to reveal the fresh scalp.
Take a spoonful of vegetable oil and combine it with one drop of lavender essential oil. This combination should be massaged into your baby’s scalp.
You can also use a teabag containing herbs such as meadowsweet, slippery elm bark, chamomile, burdock, or comfrey root to make a tea for yourself. Take a teabag containing any of these herbs and dunk it into a basin of boiling water to make a tea. Allow this tea to cool down for a moment. Once the solution has cooled, you can use it to cleanse the scalp of your newborn.
If the cradle cap is particularly thick, a moderate mineral oil such as Baker’s P and S liquid might be used. All that is required is that you apply this oil to your baby’s scalp at night time. The following day, gently comb out the scales using a fine-toothed comb to prevent further damage. After combing their hair, you can wash their scalp. It is one of the most effective home treatments for cradle cap.
If your baby’s cradle cap is hurting the region behind the ears or the neck, applying 0.5% or 1% hydrocortisone cream to the affected area daily is always a good idea. It is recommended that you use this cream three times a day to get rid of the crust.
Cod liver oil can be pretty effective in treating cradle caps when administered to your baby in tiny doses. Take a small amount of milk and mix it with cod liver oil and give this milk to your kid.
Apply vitamin E or cod liver oil to the affected area at night to help reduce inflammation. The following morning, gently brush it out.
This problem can also be resolved by massaging extra virgin coconut oil into the scalp of your child.