Baby's Dandruff or Cradle Cap: is it Common? Suggestion

Baby's Dandruff or Cradle Cap: is it Common? Suggestion

You have internal problems in your body it could be caused by Seborrheic dermatitis which is a skin ailment that focuses mainly in sebum rich areas of the skin. This condition manifests itself as a slight inflammation that eventually results in dry, flaky scales that are most commonly seen on the scalp, sides of the nose, eyebrows, eyelids, skin behind the ears and middle of the chest. In adolescents and adults, it is commonly called "dandruff." In babies, it is known as "cradle cap."


Cradle cap is a condition created when a newborn’s oil-producing scalp glands become over-active as a result of hormonal changes. This can produce mild cases that look like flaky dandruff to more thick, crusty yellow patches on the scalp, the ears, and/or the eyebrows. This causes the dead skin cells that normally fall off to "stick" to the skin and form yellow crusts and scales. There may be a relationship with skin yeasts (malassezia). Common dandruff flakes are dry, with white scales that are scattered throughout the scalp.

They can also develop red scaling on the face and yellowish scaling behind the ears. In older children, large, thick scales that won't go away may appear on the scalp. The flakes associated with psoriasis look like silver scales, which may also commonly be apparent on the ears, extremities, palms, and soles. Common dandruff flakes are dry, with white scales that are scattered throughout the scalp.

How would you confirm?

Severity:

Seborrheic dermatitis also often appears as cradle cap in infants of around six months. It usually clears by 18 months but can be a persistent problem during this time. Seborrhea is caused by stress, hormones and/or heredity and it usually affects those with oily skin. After infancy, the condition is most common in middle age or older people. It may also be associated with a poor diet and obesity, HIV and neurological conditions such as Parkinson's disease.

A different form of dermatitis, atopic dermatitis (infantile eczema), often develops as the cradle cap is improving. Atopic dermatitis generally continues for several years and is very itchy.

Sometimes the skin under the crusts of cradle cap can become infected. The skin becomes redder and small blisters appear, and then pop and weep. This is caused by the same germs that cause impetigo (‘school sores’). If this infection spreads, or your baby becomes unwell, make sure that you have your baby checked by a doctor. Your baby may need antibiotics to get rid of the infection. Unlike cradle cap, impetigo is highly contagious.

Sometimes, yeast infections will become superimposed on the affected skin, most likely in the crease areas rather than on the scalp. If this occurs, the area will become extremely reddened and quite itchy. In this case, your pediatrician might prescribe some specific anti-yeast cream containing the medicine nystatin.

If your child's over a year old and has a continually scaly scalp, it could be ringworm. Ringworm is a common and easily-treated skin infection caused by a fungus, not by a worm. In children, it can appear as a scaly round patch on the chest or the side of the scalp, and there may be hair loss. Scalp ringworm is contagious, often spread to a child by contact with an infected dog or cat. It may be confused with dandruff or with 'cradle cap,' which is a disease that occurs only during infancy.

Treatment suggestions:

It’s not totally clear what causes cradle cap, but a yeast-like or fungal organism may be involved. It usually clears by itself by 8 to 12 months of age. The good news is that sebhorrea can be treated. Keep your body clean. If it affects your scalp, use a medicated shampoo; if it affects your face and body, use a medicated soap every day. Keep your skin dry, and consider a little exposure to sunlight, which often helps as well.

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