As I have stated before, I don’t think cradle cap is a big deal, but it sure does bother the grandparents. My experience was the more I removed it, the more it came back on my baby’s head.
Cradle cap is officially called seborrheic dermatitis, and adults, such as myself, suffer from it as well.
Seborrheic dermatitis in infants, also called cradle cap, is a harmless, temporary condition. It appears as thick, crusty, yellow or brown scales over the child’s scalp. Similar scales may also be found on the eyelids, ear, around the nose, and in the groin. Cradle cap may be seen in newborns and small children up to age 3 .
Cradle cap is not contagious, nor is it caused by poor hygiene. It is not an allergy, and it is not dangerous. Cradle cap may or may not itch. If it itches, excessive scratching of the area may cause additional inflammation, and breaks in skin may cause mild infections or bleeding.
If it bothers you and you feel the need to remove it, here are some natural remedies.
- Olive Oil and a Soft Hairbrush: This is the standard remedy for cradle crap. Just rub olive oil on your baby’s scalp and let it soak in. Then take a soft, natural bristle hair brush and rub gently in circles. Organic olive oil is the safest option for baby’s tender skin with no risk of nut allergies like almond oil. A soft towel can also be used to massage baby’s head.
- Coconut Oil: Thicker than olive oil, apply to the affected area and allow to sit overnight on the scalp. In the morning, wash with a gentle soap or shampoo designed for baby.
- Tea Tree Oil: Tea Tree oil has really helped my seborrheic dermatitis, but I wouldn’t apply it directly to baby’s scalp. Combine it with aloe vera gel and leave on the scalp for 15 minutes.
- Tanamu Oil: I have recently discovered this “miracle” oil. I love what it does for my complexion and wrinkles, and I recently tried it on my scalp. It provided instant relief! It can also be used on baby’s bottom to prevent diaper rash.
- Apple Cider Vinegar: This is another home remedy that has positively affected my seborrheic dermatitis. It immediately stops the itching and seems to speed up healing between breakouts. Apply to baby’s head with a cotton ball. Be very careful not to get any in baby’s eyes!
Like baby acne, cradle cap is will eventually go away. If your child is not bothered by it, don’t worry too much.