Eczema and cradle cap
By Kidspot Team |
Eczema and cradle cap


Eczema is a skin irritation that appears as patches of dry, red, scaly skin which may become moist. Most common places are the front of knees and ankles and insides of wrists.

What causes or aggravates eczema?

  • It can run in families.
  • Certain foods may provoke attacks in infants.
  • Rough, scratchy tight clothes
  • Woollens and synthetics (carpets, car seats, furniture).
  • Frequent use of strong soap for bathing or washing clothes.
  • Perfumed creams and lotions.
  • Dust.
  • Overheating.
  • Dry air.
  • Sand.

What can I do for eczema?

  • Dress baby in light, soft, loose, smooth cotton clothes — don’t overdress.
  • Use lukewarm water in the bath.
  • Avoid soaps and cleansing lotions — use sorbolene and glycerine cream for soap at bathtime and change time.
  • Put mittens or socks on baby’s hands to stop them scratching.
  • Wash baby’s clothes in pure soap — don’t use fabric softeners or wool mix. Rinse well in water.
  • When putting baby on the floor to play, place on a cotton sheet, not the carpet.
  • Regularly vacuum the house.

If the eczema doesn’t get better, see a paediatric dermatologist.


If baby has eczema, reduce contact with people that have cold sores as baby can develop infections from this virus.

Cradle cap

This is a build up of natural oils and dry scaly skin, which can form a yellow/brown crust on baby’s head, eyebrows or behind the ears.

What you can do for cradle cap

To remove the crusts, massage sorbolene and glycerine cream into the affected area 2-3 times a day. Leave on overnight, and wash off at bathtime the next day, using a facewasher — or gently brush to stimulate the scalp, and lift off the softened crusts (don’t pick off with your nails). Do this every day until it clears.

How can I prevent cradle cap?

Every day, wash and massage baby’s scalp and gently brush their head, even if they don’t have much hair.

Find more relevant articles and information about eczema and cradle cap


This article was written by Ella Walsh for Kidspot New Zealand.

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