Scalp Problems - Seborrhoeic Dermatitis
Seborrheic dermatitis is a common condition that makes the skin look greasy, scaly and flaky. It usually affects the scalp. In adolescents and adults, seborrheic dermatitis is commonly mistaken for "dandruff."
In babies, it is known as "cradle cap." Seborrheic dermatitis can also affect the skin on other parts of the body, such as the face and chest.
The condition seems to be related to a yeast proliferation on the scalp/skin, called malassezia Fur fur. This organism is normally present on the skin in small numbers, but sometimes its numbers increase, resulting in skin problems.
Treatment: The main treatment for this condition is a coal tar shampoo; used daily it will keep the yeast level down and allow the skin to heal.
If the shampoo alone doesn't help, your doctor might want you to use a prescription steroid lotion once or twice daily, in addition to the shampoo.
Cradle cap in babies is treated with products that are not as strong as those used in adults. You might start with a watered down version of your normal medicated shampoo (a small drop in a large cup of water). Brushing your baby's scalp with a soft brush, like a toothbrush, can help loosen scales or flakes. But be gentle when massaging or brushing your baby's scalp--a break in the skin makes it vulnerable to infection.