What It Is & How It’s Treated
The medical term for cradle cap is seborrheic dermatitis. As frightening as that may sound, cradle cap is really nothing more than irritation around the oil producing glands on the scalp.
Cradle cap usually shows up within the first month of a newborn’s life. It appears as yellow, flaky skin on the scalp, and in severe cases, it can be found on the ears, eyelids, and forehead.
Cradle cap usually goes away on its own, but most parents like to try to speed the process up! Here are some ways of treating cradle cap:
Before washing your baby’s hair, rub mineral oil or baby oil on the scalp. Let it sit for a few minutes so that it can work on loosening up the dry, scaly patches. You can also take a very soft-bristled toothbrush and gently scrub the patches. Then, rinse the baby’s scalp and wash as usual.
Some doctors suggest using a dandruff shampoo such as Selsun Blue on the scalp if the mineral oil doesn’t work. However, use caution when doing this. Getting dandruff shampoo into a newborn’s eyes is not only painful but dangerous.
If the cradle cap gets worse, a prescription hydrocortisone topical cream may be prescribed. Look for signs of redness or spreading. If this happens, consult with your doctor.