Helping Seniors Live Healthier Lives

Baby Head, Baby Soft: 3 Treatments for Cradle Cap

There's a reason that moisturizers advertise that their products will give you "baby-soft" skin—the skin on your new baby is one of the softest things you'll ever feel.

But what happens when that skin on their head isn't smooth and all but instead yellowish, greasy, and sort of crusty? Like a lot of babies, your new little one might have cradle cap. But don't panic—this condition won't generally hurt your baby and is easily treatable in a number of ways. So if you're wondering how to get your baby's head back to normal, then here's what you need to know.

Hands-On Treatment

To rid your baby of this obnoxious issue, first try the manual approach. Begin by gently massaging your baby's head with your fingers, helping to loosen the scales. Then, bring in a soft-bristled brush and do the same thing, being sure to not scratch up either your baby's skin or the scales with your fingernails.

For increased help with this approach, you may want to try using a small amount of natural oil (coconut oil, for example) while massaging your baby's head, then combing off the softened scales with your soft brush once the oil has been mostly absorbed and wash off the remainder.

Wash it Away

Speaking of washing away, another method for dealing with cradle cap involves some good old fashioned soap and water. Start by shampooing your baby's head a bit more often, making sure not to dry it out too much by shampooing more than once a day. You can use mild baby shampoo, dandruff shampoo (with permission from your pediatrician), or even anti-fungal soap (once again with a recommendation from a pediatrician)—what matters is the washing.

Not only will this help the cradle's cap to go away, but the washing also will kill any bacteria that might want to burrow down in the scales or in places where the skin has fallen off.

Go to the Pro

If your baby's cradle cap presents with thrush, fungal ear infections, diarrhea, or any other health condition, however, it's time to pack your little one up and go to the doctor. Cradle cap combined with any of the above symptoms could indicate another disease lurking below the surface, such as an autoimmune disorder.

Remember, it's better to be sent home with an assurance that everything is fine (or with a prescription for special shampoo) than it is to potentially ignore a problem just because you know a home remedy for it. So if your baby's cradle cap worsens or presents alongside other health problems, it's best to go talk to services such as Kitsap Children's Clinic LLP about it.