What Causes Dry Scalp in Babies?
Dry scalp is one of the most common skin problems faced by parents. It occurs when there are no enough oils produced from the sebaceous glands (oil producing glands located at the top of your head) to keep your hair and skin healthy. These oil producing glands produce a substance called sebum which helps protect your body against infection and keeps you warm. If these oils are lacking, then your hair and skin will become dry and brittle. You may have noticed that some babies do develop dry scalp, but they usually get better within a few days. But if they don’t improve after a week or so, then something else must be wrong with them!
The first thing you need to understand is that your baby doesn’t just lose their hair because of dry scalp. Hair loss is caused by many different things.
So what causes dry scalp in babies?
There are several factors that play a role. Here are the main ones:
1. Your Baby’s Diet – One of the major reasons why your baby loses their hair is due to poor diet.
They aren’t getting enough nutrients from the foods they eat, such as vitamins A, C and E and fatty acids, which help maintain healthy hair growth. If your diet doesn’t contain enough of these nutrients, then you will suffer from dry and brittle hair.
2. External Factors – A baby’s skin is very sensitive.
It is more susceptible to the effects of external stimuli such as dust, heat and humidity. When they are exposed to these for too long, it causes dryness of the scalp. Some babies are also more prone to dry scalp, such as those with a family history of being sensitive to these external factors.
3. Poor Hygiene – If you don’t clean your hair and scalp properly, it can lead to dryness.
Babies are always on the move and they can’t be bothered to sit still while you apply shampoo or conditioner so this may be a problem if their hygiene is not kept up to scratch. If they also sweat excessively or are exposed to too much dust and dirt, then this can cause their scalp to dry up as well.
Whatever the reason, if you notice your baby starting to lose clumps of hair from their head, then you should take them to a doctor right away. It is better to be safe than sorry. In some cases, doctors will be able to treat dry scalp immediately.
But in other situations, your doctor may decide that your child needs surgery right away. This is especially true if there is a risk of the scalp becoming infected. Children’s scalps tend to become infected very easily and this can cause permanent hair loss if left untreated, so it is best to get this sorted out before the condition worsens.
How to Treat Dry Scapl in Babies?
There are many different things that you can do to treat dry scalp in babies. It is important to determine the cause of the dry scalp first so you can treat it properly.
1. Change Diapers Regularly – If your baby’s scalp is dry because his bottom is always sitting in dirty diapers, then this is something that can easily be fixed.
All you have to do is change his diapers more frequently and make sure they are clean when you do it. After all, a happy bum means a happy head!
2. Moisturize Regularly – Another cause of dry scalp in babies is due to their lack of moisturizing.
Moisturization keeps the scalp hydrated and prevents any further damage from occurring. You can use special baby moisturizers that are available on the market or you can consult your doctor about using a regular moisturizer instead.
3. Shampoo Less – If you regularly shampoo your baby’s hair, then you may want to consider cutting back.
Shampoos are very harsh and if used too much, can cause extreme dryness of the scalp. It is also best to only apply the shampoo to the roots of the hair and not wash it all the way to the ends because this can dry up the hair and make it brittle.
4. Apply Lotions – Another thing that you can do to keep your baby’s head hydrated is to apply lotion directly to the scalp.
Choose a lotion that is gentle and doesn’t have harsh chemicals. Try to moisturize at least twice a day, especially before bedtime when the scalp tends to be most susceptible to dryness.
5. Watch What You Apply – It is very important to be careful of what you use on your baby’s head.
Certain hair care products can be too harsh and may even cause dryness to the scalp. Make sure to use a gentle shampoo and rinse it out very well.
6. Try Oil – Some moms find that applying baby oil or coconut oil to their baby’s head helps to hydrate the scalp.
It doesn’t have any harmful ingredients in it like regular oils do, so it is less likely to cause an allergic reaction or other issues with your baby’s skin.
What You Eat – Are you eating a diet high in Omega 3’s and low in Greasy Foods?
Eating the right things can help to hydrate your scalp and keep it moisturized. If your diet is lacking in certain nutrients, then this can cause your scalp to become dry and flakey.
8. Stay Cool – Staying out of the sun and making sure your baby’s head is cool can help to prevent excessive dryness from occurring. If you do find that your baby’s head starts to dry out, then make sure you do everything you can to keep him from being overly warm.
9. Hydration – Keeping your baby well hydrated is very important for the health of his scalp.
Try to make sure he drinks enough water.
10. See a Doctor – If you are unable to treat dry scalp in babies at home, then you may want to see a doctor. They can prescribe a hydrocortisone cream that can help to alleviate the dryness and itch quickly.
They can also give you information about how to avoid this in the future if it is something that is likely to keep coming back.
Babies are very susceptible to dry scalp and other skin conditions because their skin is so delicate. It is important to keep your baby’s skin well moisturized and healthy so they do not develop any type of rash or dry skin on their bodies. Here are some helpful tips for taking care of your baby’s dry scalp.
1. Moisturize – Certain lotions and creams can help to hydrate the skin on your baby’s head.
Gently rub these products into your baby’s scalp at least once a day in order to make their skin less likely to become irritated or itchy.
2. Ask Your Doctor – If the problem seems to be getting worse, you may want to contact your doctor for help.
They can give you the names of certain lotions or creams that will help to alleviate the dryness and allow your baby’s skin to heal itself. Sometimes a dermatologist may have to be seen in order to treat the issue properly.
3. Be Gentle – You should never use anything with harsh chemicals on your baby.
Their skin is much more sensitive than adult skin and can easily be irritated or cause an allergic reaction if you apply anything with chemicals or perfumes to it.
4. Humidifiers – Dry air can be very bad for your baby’s skin and make the problem much worse if you do not do anything to counter act it.
Keeping a humidifier in your baby’s room can help to add moisture back into the air and prevent dry skin from becoming a problem.
5. Special Soap – Babies can have very sensitive skin and normal soaps are not good for their skin.
Always make sure to wash your baby with a gentle soap that is made for their sensitive skin.
6. Sunscreen – If you plan on taking your baby outside, it is a good idea to slather them in sunscreen before doing so.
Sunscreen can prevent your baby’s skin from becoming damaged by the sun and prevent dryness as well.
7. Don’t Over Bathe – You should never bathe your baby too often as this can dry out their skin as well.
Once every two weeks is plenty unless your baby seems to get dirty frequently or is beginning to smell.
8. Certain Clothes – It is always a good idea to dress your baby in clothes that are made out of cotton and other hypoallergenic materials.
This will prevent any type of skin rash from occurring. You should never put your baby in clothing that is too tight as this can also cause problems with the skin on their body.
9. See A Doctor – If the problem persists, you may want to talk to your doctor about it.
They can give you information on certain products that you can use on your baby to help soothe their skin.
Dry scalp in babies is not usually a serious condition, but it can cause your baby to become irritated and upset. By following the steps in this article, you can help to soothe your baby’s skin and prevent dry scalp from occurring again in the future.
Sources & references used in this article:
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Methemoglobinemia in an infant: Associated with application of a tar-benzocaine ointment by N Goluboff, DJ MacFadyen – The Journal of pediatrics, 1955 – jpeds.com
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Head lice: Epidemiology, biology, diagnosis, and treatment by L Meister, F Ochsendorf – Deutsches Ärzteblatt International, 2016 – ncbi.nlm.nih.gov
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