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How to get rid of Cradle Cap: Causes, Symptoms, Home Remedies for Cradle Cap

Cradle cap is a very common condition in babies. If the infant's scalp has flaky, dry skin, which looks like dandruff, or even thick, oily, yellowish or brown scaling or crusting patches, it is most probably cradle cap. Though it isn't cute cradle cap is, fortunately, harmless. Most of the time it appears within the first few months of life, and normally tidies up on its own in around 6 – 12 months. However, some babies carry it for several years even. You may see the same condition around the baby's ears or eyebrows, or even in the baby’s underarms and other creases. When cradle cap not on his scalp, it is called seborrheic dermatitis.

Causes of cradle cap

Medical science doesn't, as yet, know. Some experts are of the opinion that the hormones a baby gets from the mother towards the end of pregnancy over stimulate the baby's seborrheic (oil-producing) glands. This causes cradle cap. But there's no universal consent on the cause. However, what we know is that the condition isn't caused by poor hygiene or allergies. Cradle cap is not contagious; it probably doesn't bother your baby at all. However, if it gets severe it might itch.

Treatment of cradle cap

Nothing really needs to be done. However if it worries you, you could try shampooing more often and gently brushing the baby's scalp with a soft brush or a terrycloth towel. In stubborn cases, a few parents find an oil remedy helpful. It helps to loosen dry flakes. If you wish to try it, just rub just a small amount of pure, natural oil, such as almond or olive oil, on the baby's scalp. Leave it on for about 15 minutes, then gently comb out the flakes with a fine-toothed comb. Alternatively, you could brush them out with a soft brush.

Make sure to follow up by washing the baby's scalp with a gentle baby shampoo. The last thing you to do is to leave oil on the baby’s head. This could block the pores and make the flakes stick. You may even try leaving the shampoo on for a couple minutes before rinsing, to help cut the oil.

If the cradle cap is severe or it spreads beyond your baby's scalp try talking to your baby's doctor. The doctor may prescribe an OTC or prescription for seborrhea shampoo. If the scalp gets inflamed there is a cortisone cream. Once the infant's cradle cap has totally disappeared, it's not likely to come back. However, to help get rid of dead skin while it's waning, you may wish to give the baby more regular shampoos. However, don't overdo it, or you may further excite the baby’s oil-producing glands. A gentle wash twice or thrice a week with a mild shampoo should be enough.