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So does your little bundle of joy have flaky, dry skin or greasy scales that looks like dandruff? Well, worry not ….what you are looking at is cradle cap or infantile seborrheic dermatitis. Although this can be quite alarming to new parents but it is usually harmless and nothing to worry about.
What is cradle cap?
Cradle cap is an oily, yellow scaling or crusting on a baby’s scalp. It is caused by over production of oil from the oil glands under the influence of maternal hormones. It is a relatively common condition which shows up most often in the first few months of life and usually clears up on its own in about 6-12 months. It isnon contagious and occurs most commonly on the scalp but can also occur around the baby’s ears, eyebrows, eyelids and other body creases.
How to treat cradle cap?
It is a harmless entity which will go away on its own in a few month’s time. Incase it bothers you, you can do the following:-
When to see a Doctor?
See your Doctor if
- you are treating cradle cap for the first time
- you’ve tried home treatments with no success
- if the rash gets worse or covers large parts of the body
- the rash is causing hair loss or becomes itchy
The doctor might prescribe medicated shampoo containing ketoconazole, coal tar, zinc, selenium sulphide etc. Rub a little of the medicated shampoo on the scalp for 2 mins and then rinse off well. Repeat this twice a week. For other areas of the body, creams containing a mild steroid with antifungal will benefit.
So new mother, fret not! Cradle cap is a normal physiological condition of the new born which will be gone soon. However if you still feel anxious don’t hesitate to see your Doctor.