Baby, You’re A Little Flaky – Cradle Cap
You’re a new mom and can’t stop marveling at your little miracle. But sometimes you’re scared that you don’t know what you’re doing. And that’s all normal because as you know, “Babies Come Without Instructions!”- Having been a baby and toddler expert for over 35 years, I answer questions from moms daily. But for this one, I went straight to the other experts, new moms. But remember, if you’re not sure about using a certain treatment, check with your pediatrician first, of course!
I am freaking out. I just gave my two-month-old baby a bath and she has this thick, yellow, waxy stuff on her scalp. Should I rush to the pediatrician? Call my mom? I’m not sure what to do. I know that I sometimes worry too much because I’m so overtired. But she’s perfect in every way and I hope I didn’t’ use the wrong shampoo, oil or anything else to make this happen. Oh, sometimes it’s so scary to be a new mom. I hope you can help and soon. Thanks so much.
Here is what some new moms shared about getting rid of Cradle Cap after reading Beth’s question:
First calm down, take a breath and know you didn’t do anything wrong! And your baby is still perfect in every way.
It sounds like she has cradle cap and it’s very common. It usually rears its ugly head those first few months of life. It’s not contagious and should clear up on it’s own. The scalp may look dry and flaky or it can have thick oily yellow or brown patches. You don’t need to call the doctor unless it becomes red and inflamed.
Here are some suggestions from new moms just like you:
- Purchase a bottle of Paul Mitchell Tea Tree Oil shampoo. Put a dime sized squirt in your hand and gently massage your baby’s scalp when you bathe her. But be careful it doesn’t get in her eyes as this is not a “baby shampoo” but it worked. We use it every so often to prevent it from coming back. (Lara L, mom of 2 month old)
- Gently massage a small amount of olive oil onto the baby’s scalp. This will soften the cradle cap. Then use a comb to delicately scrape the scales away. Shampoo as usual. It took two or three times for the scales to be completely gone. (Joanna, G. mother of 3 month old twin girls)
- At bath-time, rub baby’s scalp with baby oil and let it soak in while you continue with the bath. Then, using a soft baby brush, brush the scalp in a circular motion, as this seems to loosen the flakes. Then use a comb to remove the little flakes. I used baby oil and did not shampoo afterward. Seemed to work better letting it soak in and also moisturized the scalp. (Madeleine, O. mother of 2 month old)
- My friend is a baby nurse and told me to use a little Head and Shoulders shampoo. It worked like a charm! Be careful not to get it into the baby’s eyes. (Alisha, J. mother of 3 month old)
- My hairdresser told me to rub jojoba oil on my baby’s scalp to loosen the cradle cap. Then shampoo as usual. It worked perfectly and never came back. But it wasn’t easy to get the oil out. (Lara, L. mother of 3 month old)
- Gently rub some mineral oil into your baby’s scalp and let sit for 20 minutes. The use a soft toothbrush and brush the flakes away. I did this when baby was napping in the bouncy chair and it worked great! (Andrea, J. mother of two month old)
- If your baby is still nursing, take a couple of tables of Brewers Yeast for a few days. This is an old remedy for cradle cap. (Rebecca, C. mother of three month old)
As you can see in our best advice , these moms used some type of oil to loosen the scales. So choose the remedy that feels right for you and your baby. And remember, a little cradle cap doesn’t take anything away from this beautiful miracle you’ve created…. your baby!