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Every new mother is bound to panic when their baby is experiencing any abnormal symptoms or suffering from an uncommon condition.
My new born son, little Lim, is 3090g when he was born. But his weight dropped dramatically to 2800g only after 3 days. I was so worried when I was looking at his stick-like legs. So I tried my best to eat well during this period of time so that my body produce enough milk for little Lim. Luckily, he gained 2kg in one and a half month. I was relieved when I saw his double chin.
However, during the third week of my confinement, I noticed that there were a lot of small but tightly space red dots on little Lim’s face.
At first, I thought it is Eczema because my two older daughters have the same thing previously. So my first reaction was to apply lotion on it. In my horror, the dots on his face got worse over time! So, I stop applying the lotion after that.
The elders recommended traditional remedies, such as the consumption of Coptis root or washing Little Lim’s face with tea leaves water. However, it was unknown whether these remedies were reliable or not.
There were some yellow scaly patches on Little Lim’s scalp. We found out that the patches would come off especially when he was showering. It appeared to look like dandruff on his head and his scalp would smell like greasy. My mother in law was got worried when it peeled off while she was bathing his because she thought that she hurt him. There yellow scaly patches and scabs were also on his head and eye brow. We researched the symptoms and found out that it was Seborrheic Dermatitis (cradle cap).
After consulting a child specialist, they confirmed that it was indeed Seborrheic Dermatitis (cradle cap) and that it is very common on new born babies. So I asked, “How long does it take to recover?”
“Depends, some may take 3-4 months”
“What I can do to reduce it?”
“Use baby oil to massage his scabs 15 minutes before showering. After softening the scab, peel it off with cotton buds. Then, use lukewarm water to wash his hair first, and then wash with shampoo. His face is to be washed with clean water but avoid applying lotion on his face.”
Seborrheic Dermatitis (cradle cap) and eczema have similar symptoms, so it can be very confusing. The difference between Seborrheic Dermatitis (cradle cap) and eczema is that eczema’s affected area will cause itchiness which may result in irritated skin but Seborrheic Dermatitis’ (cradle cap) affected area would not cause itchiness, and the condition will usually subside after the baby turns 6 months old.
We need to be extra careful when peeling off the scabs on baby’s skin. If the baby’s skin breaks when the scab is peeled off, it can get infected very easily. So I recommended using good quality baby oil on the scabs.
Seborrheic Dermatitis (cradle cap) usually affects babies from a few weeks old – 3 months old. It could be linked to overactive sebaceous glands. These are glands in the skin that produce an oily substance called sebum. Some babies are thought to retain some of their mother's hormones in their bodies for several weeks or months after their birth. These hormones may make the baby's glands produce more sebum.
For Little Lim, the infection is on his ears, eye brows, face and head. His ears need to be cleaned constantly. If not, there will be yellow scaly patches inside them.
I need to use massage oil to soften the patches first before cleaning it with cotton buds.
I use Centifolia Bebe Massage Oil, it contains Shea Oleate, organic Protium oleate, date plam oil and sunflower oil and certified by Ecocert and Biocosmetique.
It is very useful for soften cradle cap and massaging. I bought it during my pregnancy and I like it because it contains high organic content.
Massage for 15 minutes to soften the scaly patches
Remove the patches gently and you can see the scaly patches can be removed easily
The result is almost immediate as yellow scaly patches reduced a lot after few times cleaning
Use the same way to clean eye brow
Seborrheic Dermatitis (cradle cap) can be cured around 7 weeks, and the sebum produced by sebaceous glands will be reduced. According to doctor, Seborrheic Dermatitis (Cradle Cap) can be cured after 3-4 months but we need to clean the baby up properly.
How to take care of a babe that’s suffering from cradle cap?
- Don’t wear excess clothes
- Don’t over clean and make sure baby’s skin is clean and dry.
- Use suitable hair and body wash on the baby, preferably organic products
- Don’t peel the scabs off forcibly as the breakage of the skin will lead to infection
- Use Massage Oil to massage → Soften the yellow scaly patches → peel off the patches gently with cotton buds → wash baby’s hair with lukewarm water → use shampoo to clean it properly
- Try to avoid applying lotion on baby’s face
- Don’t simply try traditional remedies as you do not know the reliability
- Go to a doctor if it is getting serious.
- Bear in mind that most all the medicine given by doctors contains steroids, so only apply a thin layer if the condition is really serious, and try to focus on constant cleaning.
Your baby’s skin will become smooth and soft again in no time :)