Cradle cap is common, mostly harmless, and should go away eventually. It’s most common in babies up to 3 months old, but it can last up to a year or longer. Most cases of cradle cap go away by a child’s first birthday, and cases continue to drastically decrease as a child approaches 4 years of age.
Is cradle cap bad for babies?
Cradle cap (infant seborrheic dermatitis) is scaly patches on a baby’s scalp. Cradle cap isn’t serious, but it can cause thick crusting and white or yellow scales. Some babies can also have seborrheic dermatitis in the diaper area, and on the face, neck, and trunk. Cradle cap usually clears up within the first year.
When should I be concerned about cradle cap?
Talk to your doctor if the rash gets worse or there are any signs of infection (the skin looks red, starts to drain fluid, or feels warm). Cradle cap and seborrheic dermatitis in infants usually get better by 12 months of age.
What happens if cradle cap is left untreated?
If the areas are raw and painful, contact your pediatrician for further guidance about home care. Cradle cap is harmless and usually clears within two weeks of treatment, but can last for months without treatment. Unless the cradle cap is bothersome to you, it is perfectly okay to leave it alone.
How do I get rid of my baby’s cradle cap?
Wash your baby’s hair once a day with mild baby shampoo. Loosen the scales with a small, soft-bristled brush or fine-toothed comb before rinsing off the shampoo. If the scales don’t loosen easily, rub petroleum jelly or a few drops of mineral oil onto your baby’s scalp.
Will hair grow back after cradle cap?
It’s rare, but a baby may lose hair where they have cradle cap. The hair should grow back after the cradle cap goes away.
Is cradle cap a fungus?
There also seems to be an association between cradle cap and a type of fungus known as Malassezia which exists – usually completely harmlessly – on the skin. It is thought that some babies react against the fungus, causing inflammation which aggravates the symptoms of cradle cap.
Is cradle cap just dry skin?
Rather than just flaky, scaly skin, cradle cap is characterized by rough, crusty bumps that protrude from your baby’s scalp. Whereas baby dry scalp will feel dry, cradle cap will actually feel oily to the touch.
Should you brush cradle cap?
Gently brushing your baby’s scalp is a good way to move some flakes off their head, but be careful not to pick or scrape at the flakes. You can find special brushes made just for cradle cap. Sometimes hospitals send you home with a brush following delivery of your baby. A new toothbrush with gentle bristles also works.
How long does a cradle cap last?
Cradle cap will eventually go away on its own between 6 and 12 months of age. Usually, it doesn’t cause any symptoms (such as pain or itching).
Why do some babies get cradle cap?
About cradle cap
It happens if your baby’s skin makes too much oil (sebum), probably because mum’s hormones are still circulating in your baby’s blood after birth. This extra oil interferes with the natural shedding of skin on your baby’s scalp and creates a build-up of dead skin over the scalp.
How often should I wash my baby’s hair with cradle cap?
You can also massage and brush your baby’s scalp while its dry. Remember, over-washing can increase oil production, so shampooing every 2-3 days is a good routine.