Cradle Cap

cradle capDear Aunty Tina, my baby has brown scaly skin on the top of his head. Is this normal?

Yes, this is completely normal and is called, ‘Infantile Seborrheic Dermatitis’, more commonly known as cradle cap. It is very common in babies and some toddlers, who normally grow out of it. It is harmless, unless it looks infected/sore or is bleeding and then you should go see your doctor. No one has really pinned down why some babies get it. It is not due to poor hygiene though, which can be a common misconception. You do not want to be over washing your baby’s hair, which may dry their scalp out even more. You should however make sure that the shampoo you are using is a gentle baby shampoo or all natural.

Adele Davis the author of ‘Let’s have healthy children’ thought that babies with cradle cap who are nursed can be helped by the mother adding ‘Nutritional yeast, liver, 250 milligrams of magnesioum oxide, and 25 milligrams of B6 to her daily diet’. It is easy to remedy. All you need to do is rub some natural oil onto your baby’s scalp – olive oil works great – and then gently rub or brush the flakes off (a soft brush, like the one in your birthing kit works well). It may or may not come back. If it does, do not worry. Try changing to a gentler shampoo, changing your diet, and gently use the oil remedy again.

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Tina Garzero CPM, LMT. practiced midwifery for 40 years and lived on Maui for over 35 Years. She was the mother to 9 children and lived in Haiku. She is the heart of the Mauimama and will be sorely missed. (Tina Garzero 1951-2015). We love you Tina. This website is dedicated to Tina's life and service on Maui.