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Being a parent of a newborn can be daunting, for sure, but you do what you must do to get through - it's what almost everyone goes through. As childcare courses  show us, when dealing with very young children, a common issue that can arise is cradle cap. It may be a fairly minor problem in the whole scheme of things, but you still need to keep an eye on it.

So, What Is Cradle Cap Caused By? 

While it's not fully known what leads to cradle cap, it is believed that it has something to do with the hormones that are still whizzing around the baby's body from their Mother. This can lead the baby's skin to over-produce oil, which then dries and flakes. What it isn't caused by is poor hygiene.

Do All Babies Get Cradle Cap? 

Actually, no. Just 10% of infants under 1-month-old get cradle cap, which rises to 70% by month 3 before dropping back down to 7% between 12-24 months. So if it's something your baby has, don't worry - it's very common and is most likely not related to anything you're doing wrong.

Cradle cap symptoms include:

  • Waxy scales on baby's scalp
  • Pale yellow crusts in their hair
  • Usually at the back or on top of the head
  • Sometimes seen on the torso, eyebrows or behind the ears

Engage in early childhood education  and learn that cradle cap is something that shouldn't be picked - as much as you might want to. Doing so will most likely cause further problems, making the skin break and bleeding. The good news is that while it might look bad to you, it's typically not itchy, so your baby will probably not be bothered by it.

What Should You Do About Cradle Cap?

As it's not a terribly serious problem for your baby, the likelihood is that you won't have to visit your doctor. However, as previously mentioned, if things worsen, you may need to seek medical attention.

For example, if any of the following occurs:

  • The skin starts to weep
  • Inflammation builds around the area
  • Things are complicated with the development of a rash
  • Your baby starts to scratch their scalp
  • Baby experiences poor feeding/tiredness or fever

It's a problem that usually disappears without treatment within the first few months, dissipating as Mum's hormones subside from their body. You can help things by applying either petroleum jelly to the area or baby oil. It just helps to soften the skin and prevent dryness.

Over-the-Counter Remedies For Cradle Cap

There are a number of over-the-counter options for controlling cradle in Australia, so there is help at hand. Of course, you could just follow the advice shown above, and things will be fine, but if you’re looking for something to give you peace of mind, there are a number of brands available:

In the interests of impartiality, there are many other brands on the market for controlling cradle cap, and we have no affiliation with any of the products mentioned. They're just options for you to consider. 

Improve Your Childcare Skills With OCA Online Training 

Cradle cap is just one of the many things you have to think about as a parent, so it's a tremendous responsibility. However, if you're a parent or someone planning to become a teacher's aide, developing the necessary skills is easier than you might think. At OCA, early childhood education courses like our Caring For Babies & Toddlers Certificate are both CPD Accredited and video-based for easy digestion.

Our students get a next-level learning experience, so you can forget everything they know about rigid, text-based training. Want to know exactly what kind of immersive experience you get? Take a gander at our student study demo, which clearly illustrates what sets us apart from the competition.

Learning is well-supported with us, too, as every course in our library (one that covers more than 20 different industries) comes with 1-to-1 mentoring and 24/7 tutorial assistance. To find out more about this or easy payment options, head over to today.

Alternatively, to speak to us directly about our early childhood education training or anything else, call us on 1300 611 404 or email us at As soon as we hear from you, we'll get back to you as quickly as we can.

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