What is Cradle Cap?
Cradle cap, also known as infantile seborrheic dermatitis, is a common skin condition of the scalp in newborns. As babies grow older, the risk of cradle cap decreases and this short-term condition will clear up on its own within a few months. Cradle cap in winter can be worse because of the dry weather.
Babies can develop seborrheic dermatitis when they're between 2 weeks and 12 months old. It usually starts with cradle cap. A baby with cradle cap will have slightly red scaly or crusty yellow patches on the scalp. It may also start on the face or diaer area and spread to other parts of the body.
Seborrhea looks red and moist in skin creases and folds (like the neck and behind the ears), yellowish with greasy patches or crusts, and scaly or flaky.Seborrheic dermatitis might look uncomfortable or irritating to the skin. But it usually isn't itchy and doesn't seem to bother infants.
What Causes Cradle Cap?
When a baby’s skin makes too much sebum (oil), often caused by the mum’s hormones that are still circulating in the baby’s blood even after birth. The sebum creates a build-up of dead skin on the scalp and prevents the natural shedding of skin on the baby’s scalp.
How Can I Prevent Cradle Cap In Winter?
The dry winter can make the cradle cap in babies worse. However, cradle caps in winter can be prevented by following a few essential steps in a baby’s skincare.
Using A Baby-Safe Oil
Applying a baby-safe hair oil such as our Baby Stimulating Growth Oil on the baby’s scalp before washing the hair can help in removing the scales more easily. Take a small amount of oil and massage it directly onto the scaly patches on the baby’s scalp. Wash off the oil after some time. A scalp massage also helps a baby relax and calm down.
Washing The Scalp Daily
If your baby has a cradle cap then it is advisable to wash their hair daily even during winter when parents tend to think that a daily hair wash is not needed but a baby suffering from a cradle cap needs a daily hair wash with natural baby shampoo such as our Baby 2-in-1 Shampoo & Body Gel or our Eczema Shampoo & Body Wash. A daily wash helps prevent further outbreaks and also gets rid of the dry patches.
Remember to massage the scalp gently while washing the hair.
Rinsing The Scalp Thoroughly
During winter parents tend to make bath time quick since it’s cold and that often means a rushed rinse of the scalp. It is important to rinse the baby’s scalp thoroughly with lukewarm water to wash off the shampoo. This can help to prevent an itchy, dry scalp.
The cradle cap clears up on its own in a few months and is not a serious condition. If you follow these basic steps it is possible to prevent cradle caps.