Shaving a baby’s head makes the hair grow thicker and stronger

May 20, 2014 by  
Filed under Baby Tips

shaving baby's headMost of us have heard this statement that shaving a baby’s head makes the hair grow thicker and stronger. In Indian culture shaving baby’s head is considered auspicious and is done in the guidance of a professional person. The rituals are plenty and the occasion is called Mundan ceremony. Usually it is a gathering of family and friends followed by a grand and elaborate meal.

Hair is a precious possession for every individual. Few people are fortunate and have good hair. They take pride in the quality and quantity of hair. Be it a myth or reality, most religions in India practice the ritual of shaving baby’s head prior to the baby being 1 year old.

The mundan is performed on a specific date at an auspicious time. The day and time is decided by a priest based on the time of the birth. Different religions follow different customs and they select pilgrim spots to visit for conducting this ritual. Entire family travel and conduct this ceremony.

Shaving baby’s head –Tradition

Elders and experts strongly advocate that shaving baby’s head is only a tradition and a custom. This practice has nothing to do with hair growth. Hair growth depend on the hair follicle and whatever is done above the scalp will not affect the hair growth. Shaving baby’s head People believe that all impurities are cleaned with this ritual. It is a new beginning.However, when the hair is cut and new hair starts growing, the hair looks thick and healthy due to uniform growth

When to shave baby’s head

Even though some religions practice cutting hair on when the baby is nine days old. The only caution is that the baby’s head is soft and any turn or unpredictable moment can result in serious injuries. It’ll be better if the shaving is done when the head has hardened and the baby can be managed. The other caution is that the soft spothas to be gently dealt with under the supervision of elders and professionals.

Tips to follow while Shaving baby’s head

  • Go thru’ the list of tips to be followed while shaving baby’s head. This will avoid any unforeseen accidents and worries.
  • Preferably conduct the shaving of baby’s head in the day time. Baby is less cranky and there will be sufficient light too.
  • Keep baby comfortable and for sure distracted with the items of his choice, colorful images , music of the baby’s liking.Understand how to soothe your crying baby.
  • Use a baby soap to lather  the head prior to the shaving process.
  • Keep cleaning the razor using disinfectant diluted in warm water. Also keep rinsing the baby’s head too with warm water.
  • Keep the baby engaged with conversation. Ensure baby is busy such that the professional person conducting the job can complete the tasks uninterrupted. Feed baby prior to starting the shaving job.
  • After the shaving of head  is done, give your child a good bath with lukewarm water so that all the hair fallen over the body gets washed off.
  • Apply disinfectant and after that moisturizer on your baby’s head. This will prevent drying and itching of the scalp. In Indian tradition a mixture of sandalwood (chandan) and turmeric powder (haldi) is applied. Chandan gives cooling effect and turmeric is popular for its antiseptic properties.
  • Ensure the barber’s tools for shaving baby’s head are all sterilized and in good condition. Applicable if you are visiting a holy place to perform the ceremony.

Shaving the baby’s head is not a bid deal but then you need to conduct this task safely and in the guidance of elders and professionals only. Further read: How should I treat the scaly flakes on my babies head?

How should I treat the scaly flakes on my babies head?

May 8, 2014 by  
Filed under Baby Problems

treat scaly flakes on babies headFor the last few days I have been observing a thick, oily, brown scaling on my babies scalp. These are flaky and when dry comes off like dandruff. This is a common concern of parents who are alarmed and worried of how these scaly flakes are going to affect the baby.

This condition is called Cradle cap. Doctors call it seborrheic dermatitis, and it’s very common in small babies. In older kids the problem is called dandruff.


Cradle cap shows up in the initial months and remain upto 9 months sometimes a year too. The duration varies from child to child and family history too.

Some babies get these scales just as a small patch, others have scales all over their heads. Sometimes, cradle cap can even occur on the eyebrows, eyelids, ears, crease of the nose, back of the neck, diaper area, or armpits.

You will be tempted to pick at the scaly patches on your baby’s head, but try not to. Picking at it can leave sore patches that could become infected.

Is cradle cap contagious?

Cradle cap is not contagious and it is not caused due to poor hygiene or allergies. Most of the time, it just goes away on its own.

Causes of Cradle cap?

The exact cause of cradle cap isn’t known, although some researchers believe it can be caused by an overproduction of skin oil (sebum) in the oil glands and hair follicles. A type of yeast (fungus) called malassezia can grow in the sebum along with bacteria, and this may be another factor in the development of cradle cap.

Also observed that this skin problem -Seborrhea often runs in families, meaning the conditions that lead to cradle cap can be passed from mother to baby before birth. Factors that contribute in development of cradle cap are weather extremes, oily skin, infrequent skin cleaning, lotions that contain alcohol, obesity, and other skin disorders

How to treat cradle cap?

Your baby will not be bothered by this skin condition. Itching happens if the spread of flakes is severe. Understand how to treat cradle cap.

Massage your baby’s scalp with coconut oil or almond oil such that the skin is moist. Leave it for 15 mins. Then clean the scalp with a soft brush to help loosen the scales and wash your baby’s scalp with mild shampoo.

Follow this routine daily and you will see the flakes decrease gradually.Once the scales are less the frequency of shampooing baby’s head can be changed to once a week. Cradle cap may disappear for months at a time and then suddenly reappear, you can control the re-occurrence by regular oiling and shampooing.

If your baby’s cradle cap starts to look red and swollen, take her to the doctor. Avoid self medication. Consult the doctor if the condition is becoming severe. this indicates that the area is infected. Your doctor can prescribe an antifungal cream or medicated shampoo, or a course of antibiotics.

There is nothing to worry. Follow doctors instructions and your baby will be free of the skin complaint.

Also read: Easy ways to treat baby eczema effectively