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

Almond Oil is Ideal for Baby Massage

March 8, 2013 by  
Filed under Baby Tips

almond oil is ideal for baby massageBaby massage is very important for the growth and development of a baby’s body. There are a lot of oils available in the market. The recommended ones are coconut oil and almond oil. Almond oil is known as badam tel.

Coconut oil can be used on babies all round the year. Commonly used in southern states of India. Almond oil provides moisturizing effect. In winter due to external cold the new born baby’s skin become dry. Selection of oil is very critical as the baby’s skin is very sensitive and if the oil is of poor quality baby may get rashes.

Massage plays a very important role, it makes baby’s bones and muscles strong and develops healthy body. You can start massaging on baby when the new born is 10 to 15 days old. Oil massage stimulates respiration, circulation, digestion and elimination. After an oil massage and warm water bath babies will have a sound sleep. They will remain active, relaxed and cheerful. Massage is also thought to help relieve gas,  colic and constipation problems; it also helps heal the infant during illness by easing congestion and pain.

Massaging encourages the bond between mother and child. The gentle strokes of the mothers hands gives warmth to the baby and the mother and baby bond strengthens. Ensure baby does not put his hands and feet into the mouth during massaging as there are chances the oil can get inside. Do not pour oil into the ears and nose while massaging. Initially baby will show dislike to massaging. But as the days go by the baby will take it as part of his exercise routine .

almond oil is ideal for baby massageAlmond oil is used on baby’s skin and head too. Almond oil helps hair growth and strengthens the hair roots. The skin becomes nourished and glows. Almond oil has a light, sweet scent and contains vitamins A, B1, B2, B6 and E, as well as monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats. Almond massage oil is an excellent choice for use on babies because it is naturally rich in emollients and pure enough for sensitive baby skin.

Massaging almond oil on baby’s scalp will moisten the dandruff flakes and you will be able to wash it off within a weeks time. Almond oil makes the skin soft, supple and baby’s skin will glow with radiance.

It is recommended to take your pediatricians advice in case you want to shift to a new oil. Use oil in its pure form to avoid contamination and addition of minerals in the oil.

Do not mix different varieties of oil to massage the baby. Wash the oil completely during the bath to avoid any remnants on the baby making it uncomfortable and sticky. Read the instructions mentioned on the label pack. Also consult the elders in the family for guidance.

The prominent oils used in different parts of India are Olive oil, Sesame oil, Ghee in addition to coconut oil and almond oil. Almond is the king of nuts and therefore the price of oil is higher than the other oils used for babies. A little more care to the baby’s skin and hair will have long lasting results.  Baby skin care has to begun from the early days itself , never know your baby may grow up to be a famous personality.

New Moms Newborn Basic Baby Care Tips

January 7, 2013 by  
Filed under Baby Tips

Congratulations !!

You are a mother of a new born baby. This is a time to enjoy the experience of motherhood along with your family. A new mom can have a lot of queries and clarifications in the day to day proceedings. Bringing up kids is a major challenge, a huge responsibility . A mother needs to be vigilant and always keep an eye on the baby.

Grandparents and parents guide the new born mother to conduct all basic activities for the child. The key activities to be done in a day are:

Breast feeding

Breast milk is the best feed for your baby. It is proved to be the best as there is a special bond between mother and child. The more your baby nurses the more milk you will have. Ideally the mother also will come back to shape after her delivery with breastfeeding.

For some mothers the milk will not be sufficient to feed the baby , in such cases you can opt for the best quality milk formula. The only watch out is following hygienic practices and be disciplined in the approach. You need to sterilize the bottle and nipple in between feeds. Clean the child’s mouth with a moist cloth or towel . Do not leave the bottle in the child’s mouth as it can result in tooth decay.

Use a bib or towel while feeding the child. This will avoid unpleasant smell for the baby and the baby will not be irritated due to dryness and sticky feeling. Burp the baby after and between feeds. Religiously give water 1 or 2 oz ( boiled and cooled) or distilled water 2 or 3 times in a day.

Tips for new mom new born babyOil massage

Indian women believe in giving the baby oil massage daily in the early hours of the day. Coconut oil or oil of reputed brands can be applied on the baby’s entire body and head. Steps to be followed:

  • The baby is made to lie on its back on the legs or in case not comfortable on a rubber sheet.
  • Oil is taken in both palms and applied on the head in a circular motion to ensure the head is round and not flattened. This will help mold your head with a good shape.
  • You need to apply oil externally and pull the nose upwards gently to make it a bit pointed and long. Usually baby’s are born with a flat nose.
  • You need to apply oil on the chest and stomach and ensure it spreads all over the body. The next step is to squeeze out the nipple of the baby. Some white fluid will come out when pressed.
  • Apply oil on each had and gently fold the hand together on the chest and back two to three times.
  • Next is the legs. Hold your baby’s legs straight and close to each other. Then, with both hands start massaging your child’s thigh down to his knees then to his legs massaging from the outside to the inside. Fold legs at the knee and back. This will strengthen feet and prevent being bow-legged afterwards.
  • Keep monitoring the baby . If you feel that the child is not enjoying then stop for a while and then continue. Keep him engaged with sounds of toys etc.You can keep talking to the child. This develops a bond between you and your child.
  • Make the baby lie down for 15 to 20 minutes.

Baby bathing

  • Make sure you have brought all items required for the baby prior to bathing.
  • Bathe the baby in hot water that is above luke warm temperature. Apply baby soap daily and baby shampoo twice in a week.
  • Be extremely careful while handling the head as it is still not straight. You need to balance very carefully. Remember the baby’s head is very soft and therefore be cautious while bathing.
  • The baby can be wiped dry and put on baby powder all over the body. Use a powder puff. In India eyetex is applied on the eyebrows for helping growth of thick and shapely eyebrows. We also place an eyetex bindi ( a dot with the tip of your tiny finger)on the cheek and under the feet, this will ward away evil eyes and it is believed that the child will not have any problems in its growth.
  • Wipe your baby’s outer ears with a cotton balls or wash cloth but don’t try to clean the ear canal itself. The ear wax will come out unsurprisingly since the ear is naturally self-cleaning. But if you feel the baby is irritated then ask the doctor about it.
  • Like ears, the nose is also self-cleaning and needs no special care. Just wipe the outside preferably with wet wipes or wash cloth. Don’t use cotton swabs, tissue or even your fingernails.
  • Put on baby clothes and diaper. The mother can feed the baby and put him to sleep. The baby will sleep comfortably for 2 hours minimum.
  • You need to have a round pillow to ensure the head does not get flattened. Keep changing positions of the head after some duration.
  • This schedule of massage and bathing can continue daily for two months. In case baby has slight temperature avoid washing the head.

General routine tips:

  • In the evenings you can sponge the baby with a wet towel properly squeezed.
  • You should clean your baby’s umbilical cord with 70% ethyl alcohol 2 times a day or every diaper change. Never let water pass or enter the umbilical cord.
  • At birth, infant’s nails are typically overgrown. The ideal time to trim them is when the baby is fast asleep. If not done the baby may scratch their own face
  • If the nails are neither long nor short, it is still better to put on mittens on your baby’s little hands just to be safe.
  • As soon as the baby can see things though not yet clear, they begin to focus their eyes on objects. Sometimes, this causes them to appear as crossed eyes where just one eye focus on what he is looking at while the other just seems aimed anywhere. These eye movements mean he is still learning to use his eyes. But still it would be better to just close his eyes and restart his focus on objects.
  •  While sleeping, make sure that your baby’s head position is changed regularly. For example, if his head is on the right side for an hour then try to have his head on the left side after and so on. It would also be better if his pillow is comfortable enough for his head to move around. This is to prevent from having a baby’s head with flat side.
  • Once a day or after feeding if necessary, make sure to clean your baby’s mouth with a clean wet washcloth or an infant brush where you put your finger in it. This could prevent mouth and tongue infection brought about by milk leftovers.
  • When dressing your baby, use clothing with an easy-on and easy-off feature as much as possible. This could be wide neck openings or necks with snap closings. Fairly loose sleeves and a minimum fastening should be necessary. Preferably use material like cotton, spun that is soothing and comfortable. Avoid clothes of glittery and non absorbing texture as the baby is on its back for a long time.
  • These are just basic tips for new moms out there. If there are things that you are in doubt about your baby’s condition that needs immediate attention, don’t hesitate to immediately call your baby’s pediatrician. They  are the true guides and will help you in the development and well-being of your baby.
  • You can create a network of new moms and keep exchanging your learning’s to the others too.