2

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Cradle cap and paleo? (update)

Answered on September 12, 2014
Created February 01, 2011 at 9:58 AM

My 18 month old adorable son has this skin thing called cradle cap (wikipedia here). We're not worried about it, as it seems to be benign and temporary.

But because I'm always wearing my paleo goggles, I thought asking this community for some input.

Do you have any experience with this? Are there any paleo things to think of? In my language, we call it milk-crust, so that got me thinking...

My son eats paleo (meat, fish, fruits and veggies, minimal dairy (some yoghurt, lots of gf butter, some nuts). He was on a minimal grain diet (daycare being difficult), but now he's totally grain free, like the rest of the family. He's very active, is not sick, really good humoured, ... So no reason to worry.

UPDATE: We tried the coconut thing and it works: just rub the coconut oil, leave it for an hour, and then wash the hairs. Normally we don't use shampoo, but this time it was necessary. Big improvement after first time, even more after second time.

6120c989fd5b69f42a0834b69b87955b

(24553)

on February 20, 2012
at 06:23 PM

I worry about using essential oils directly on the skin of small children, supposedly the particles in the oils are small enough to penetrate deeply into the body and have potential hormonal effects. Cool water infusions of flowers and herbs are suggested as being safer.

62ed65f3596aa2f62fa1d58a0c09f8c3

(20807)

on February 02, 2011
at 05:03 AM

Keep us posted!

89e238284ccb95b439edcff9e123671e

(10299)

on February 01, 2011
at 08:17 PM

Thank you Ed!! Let's try the coconut first!

3558d8feb56bc681144f87e67140f885

on February 01, 2011
at 05:56 PM

This is exactly what I was going to say!

100fd85230060e754fc13394eee6d6f1

(18696)

on February 01, 2011
at 04:57 PM

Yup, that worked for us. It was gone in a day.

89e238284ccb95b439edcff9e123671e

(10299)

on February 01, 2011
at 11:55 AM

Thanks Carly. btw, you can edit your typos...

2507b557331c8a674bc81197531e609a

(4994)

on February 01, 2011
at 10:15 AM

Hmm, couple of typos there, really should read my answer before I post :D

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7 Answers

best answer

5
6426d61a13689f8f651164b10f121d64

(11488)

on February 01, 2011
at 04:16 PM

Pieter D,

One theory of cradle cap is that it is related to hormones--high androgen levels at the time of birth lead to overactive sebaceous (oil) glands for a period of several months. However, that explanation does not seem to hold true for your son. By the age of 18 months, the cradle cap should have already been resolved if it was caused by hormones.

You may want to consider a second theory of cradle cap causation, cutaneous yeast infection. This theory is more plausible in an 18 month old than the hormonal theory.

The treatment for cradle cap (and adult dandruff) caused by yeast infection is antifungal medication. Coconut oil, which others have suggested, may work, since it has antibacterial/antifungal properties. Also, topical coconut oil is harmless (unless you're allergic to it), so it makes a great first-line treatment. If the coconut oil doesn't work, you could try ketoconazole (Nizoral) shampoo, which is available over-the-counter in the USA, but I'm not sure about Europe.

89e238284ccb95b439edcff9e123671e

(10299)

on February 01, 2011
at 08:17 PM

Thank you Ed!! Let's try the coconut first!

62ed65f3596aa2f62fa1d58a0c09f8c3

(20807)

on February 02, 2011
at 05:03 AM

Keep us posted!

4
2507b557331c8a674bc81197531e609a

(4994)

on February 01, 2011
at 10:14 AM

Rubbing coconut (refined or organic) on the affected area gets rid of it nicely, just gently massage some coconut oil in so it's on the scalp for at least an hour and then wash, you can gently brush the loosened flakes off with a soft brush and after a few treatments it should be gone, with no nasty chemicals :)

2507b557331c8a674bc81197531e609a

(4994)

on February 01, 2011
at 10:15 AM

Hmm, couple of typos there, really should read my answer before I post :D

89e238284ccb95b439edcff9e123671e

(10299)

on February 01, 2011
at 11:55 AM

Thanks Carly. btw, you can edit your typos...

100fd85230060e754fc13394eee6d6f1

(18696)

on February 01, 2011
at 04:57 PM

Yup, that worked for us. It was gone in a day.

3558d8feb56bc681144f87e67140f885

on February 01, 2011
at 05:56 PM

This is exactly what I was going to say!

2
Aead76beb5fc7b762a6b4ddc234f6051

(15239)

on February 01, 2011
at 02:17 PM

yes! both my babies had it, one on his ears and forehead, too. i mix up some olive or coconut oil with a few drops each lavender and tea tree ESSENTIAL oil (not fragrance oil) and massage it in, let it sit in there for a hour or so before a bath, and use a washcloth or soft brush to scrape it off. lavender and tea tree are antifungal and antimicrobial, and the oil helps dissolve the oily flakes.

1
Aa69579f867333b08158c70e25f7daf1

(1826)

on February 21, 2012
at 01:23 AM

My cousin's son had this. Turned out to be an egg allergy, so once she stopped eating them, it cleared right up!

1
D8a8920ae839c34af9f1971a00d06e24

on February 20, 2012
at 04:00 PM

My son of 22 months has suddenly developed cradle cap in the last couple of weeks - never had it before. He is breastfed and I have just discovered I am pregnant - I am wondering if the pregnancy hormones are the reason! Could this apply to you?

1
87c70cb6d22de2a71fd39a7bb4a63a2b

(40)

on February 02, 2011
at 10:28 PM

I've been told that combining lavender and tea tree is not a good idea...may just be speculation, though.

A good friend had great success with coconut oil and jojoba oil - both are anti-microbial!

6120c989fd5b69f42a0834b69b87955b

(24553)

on February 20, 2012
at 06:23 PM

I worry about using essential oils directly on the skin of small children, supposedly the particles in the oils are small enough to penetrate deeply into the body and have potential hormonal effects. Cool water infusions of flowers and herbs are suggested as being safer.

1
C4134ed417dbc0a6b79ab2cee32632d3

(1801)

on February 01, 2011
at 01:36 PM

Are you breastfeeding? I'm still breastfeeding my (almost) 2 yo. son and I find that I have to supplement with flaxseed oil. If I don't he gets eczema flare ups and dry scaly skin. Just a suggestion as pregnancy & nursing can be pretty demanding on our bodies. I think that I may have underlying issues with my digestion, which is why this is a problem for us.

I also agree with coconut or olive oil applied topically too.

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