Skip to content
My WebMD Sign In, Sign Up

First Aid & Emergencies

Font Size

Treating Cradle Cap in Children

Cradle cap is a crusty, scaly rash on a baby's scalp. It's common and harmless, and not a sign of allergy, infection, or hygiene problems.

Call Doctor If:

  • Your baby's cradle cap seems itchy.

1. Wash the Scalp

  • Use a gentle shampoo to wash your baby's scalp daily until the cradle cap clears up.
  • Don't use a medicated shampoo on a baby unless a pediatrician recommends it.

2. Remove Scales

  • Brushing the hair with a soft-bristled brush will help remove some of the scales.
  • Gently massaging your baby's scalp will remove scales, too.
  • Using baby oil may help remove scales when combing the scalp.

 

3. Be Patient

  • Cradle cap usually goes away on its own. Most children outgrow it before age 3.

WebMD Medical Reference

Reviewed by Roy Benaroch, MD on September 14, 2013

First Aid A-Z

  • There are no topics that begin with 'O'
  • There are no topics that begin with 'Q'
  • There are no topics that begin with 'U'
  • There are no topics that begin with 'X'
  • There are no topics that begin with 'Y'
  • There are no topics that begin with 'Z'

Today on WebMD

Antibiotic on hand
Slideshow
3d scan of fractured skull
Slideshow
 
Father putting ointment on boy's face
Slideshow
Person taking food from oven
Q&A
 

Health Solutions From Our Sponsors

sniffling child
Slideshow
wound care true or false
Slideshow
 
caring for wounds
Slideshow
Harvest mite
Slideshow
 

WebMD the app

Get first aid information. Whenever. Wherever... with your iPhone, iPad or Android.

Find Out More