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All three of my daughters have had cradle cap at one point or another. It usually starts with me excitedly thinking: I'm gonna have a redhead! Then I look closer and to my dismay discover the yellowish/orangish scabbiness creeping back along their hairlines.
I remember with my first daughter I was a little embarrassed. Between that, loss of hair, and her baby acne she did not look nearly as cute as she had when I brought her home from the hospital. I was in complete denial at the time and it probably led to her having those issues longer.
This is what cradle cap looked like on my daughter. It's such a fine flaky layer under her baby down it almost makes her hair look shiny in the light.
Once I acknowledged it was not red hair, I began looking into how to solve the problem. The cradle cap was on their scalps and also their EYEBROWS.
Another mom had given me a large, mostly full, bottle of cradle cap solution, but it said to not use it near the baby's eyes. So I looked for natural solutions to my problem. I just didn't want to put anything with more than one ingredient close to my baby's eyes.
I've tried coconut oil, olive oil, and mineral oil. What I found was it didn't really matter which oil I used. I just needed to be liberal with it and give it at least 15 minutes to soak in and soften the dead skin. Then, using a combination of my nails and a fine-tooth comb, I gently raked it through my daughter's hair.
This is Annie with cradle cap in her eyebrows. See how they look a little red? Just putting a little oil on them and working it in fixed the problem. I wouldn't want any dangerous chemicals getting anywhere near those baby blues.
A number of folks have suggested probiotics to me, but I've never used probiotics specifically for this purpose. Letting the oil soak in and removing the scaly skin as completely as I can usually resolves the problem.
Here are some of the cradle cap solutions offered by other moms:
Sarah B. says, "We had a rough go of this for a couple of weeks, but we got past it with coconut oil and a cradle cap brush, and ultimately we switched him to hypoallergenic formula and started probiotics. That seemed to kick it for good!"
Laura G. says, "I would only notice it when I would buzz my sons hair about once a month. After I finished cutting his hair, I would rub coconut oil on the patch and then send him up to the bath. The oil would sit on his head for the 10-15 minutes he played in the bath and then we would gently scrub it out. At one point I had a nail brush I used."
Danika S. says:1. Probiotics for you (if nursing) and Probonix for baby.2. Comb and baby brush set (and use your nails)3. Coconut oil rubbed on as often as diaper changes and brush while nursing or feeding -- I found this best since they were distracted4. Just keep combing off and scraping off gently with nails5. Consistent coco oil use is great for maintaining (I still use in the morning and night before and after sleeping)
Melissa S. says "Yep, coconut oil, baby brush, and probiotics were our go-tos also...my littles didn't have it too badly so I just coconut oiled maybe 30 minutes before bath time, let it sit, and then used the bath brush to gently wash their hair/scalp with baby shampoo. That seemed to work for us even though I only bathed once or twice a week..."
Bethany M. says, "Our derm recommended T/Sal shampoo and it got rid of it the same day. I know it's not ideal because it's not natural and not tear-free, but it has worked with both my kids and their thick curly hair."
However it's handled-- with oil, probiotics, or a prescription-- your sweet baby will just want to get the whole thing over with so more important things can happen -- like swinging. Nothing beats swinging for this kid.
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