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Cradle cap in infants can be very common, but it becomes a matter of concern if it spreads. Read on to know about cradle cap in babies/ newborns.

Cradle Cap in Infants

Cradle cap, also known as ‘Crusta Lactea’, is a yellowish, patchy, greasy and crusty skin rash that occurs on the scalp of new born babies. It is something quite common among the newborns and begins in the first 3 months of the baby’s birth. It is usually not itchy and doesn’t bother babies much. But, if it starts getting thicker and starts spreading, it becomes a matter of concern. The rash is prominent around the ear, the eyebrows or the eyelids. It can also spread and appear at other places also, where it is called ‘Seborrhoeic dermatitis’. Almost half of the babies have a mild version of cradle cap. Since it is quite common among the babies, it is not taken seriously by the parents. Parents usually resort to homely remedies to deal with the problem, but, it is advisable to refer to the doctor. The earlier it is taken care of, the better it is for the baby. Read on to know more about cradle cap.

Causes
The causes of cradle cap are not clearly defined. It is not caused by any infection, allergy or from poor hygiene. It is possibly caused because of sebaceous glands in the skin of newborn babies, which is due to the mother’s hormones still in the baby’s circulation. These glands release a greasy substance that makes the old skin cells attach to the scalp instead of falling off after drying. Practitioners and physicians have also speculated that this disorder is caused because of baby’s immature digestive system being unable to absorb sufficient ‘biotin’ and other vitamins of B complex.

Signs & Symptoms
Diagnosis
There is no well defined diagnostic test for cradle cap. The diagnosis is basically based on a thorough medical history and physical examination of the child. Examination of medical history includes family history of any skin problems, allergies or anything else that might have contributed to the problem. A physical examination, on other hand, includes the examination of any signs of cradle cap in the baby and its location. Also, any other rashes on the baby’s body are also checked in for. If the doctor tracks any allergic reaction, then the baby is recommended to an allergist.

Treatment