Advice on Dry Scalp

Updated on February 13, 2008
A.K. asks from Cary, NC
28 answers

My 2 year old daughter has been having a problem with dry scalp for a couple of months now, even having some brown patches, almost like cradle cap in babies. I've tried not washing her hair as often, switching shampoos, someone suggested rubbing vinegar on her scalp and I tried that too. Nothing seems to be improving the situation. It doesn't really bother her and it doesn't flake up, unless you start to pick at it. Her brownish/blond hair seems to hide the problem from view. Has anyone had this problem with their child? Does anyone have any suggestions on how to get rid of the dry scalp? Could this possibly be linked to a nutrition problem?

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So What Happened?

Wow! I had no idea this was such a common problem. Thank you so much mama's for all your advice. It appears that olive oil, baby oil, tea tree oil, or head and shoulders shampoo were the top remedies. I decided to use the olive oil since I already had it in the house. I put a little bit on a cotton ball and rubbed it on the dry areas and massaged it in for a little while. Then I took a comb and brushed the area. The next morning I gave her a bath and washed her hair (which my daughter enjoyed the new morning routine!). I only had to do this 3 times and it was gone. YEAH!! I had no idea the solution was that easy. Thanks again ladies!

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K.W.

answers from Pensacola on

Try using conditioner! It should help and if it dont them use some head and shoulders for dry scalp! That will help as well! Good luck

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E.P.

answers from Orlando on

I used baby oil on both my sons. Just rub in and let sit. Then comb out any loose flaking. Sounds like olive oil and tree oil work similarly. I never tried Head & Shoulders.

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J.I.

answers from Tampa on

My son has that too. I find nothing gets rid of it completely, but the winnie the pooh cradle cap shampoo helps a lot. I don't love the smell of it, but i can deal. I believe you can buy the shampoo at target.
J. Isch mother of Justin

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K.P.

answers from Tampa on

it sounds like cradle cap. my daughter had it on her scalp, eyebrows and behind her ears. i used olive oil (straight from my kitchen) on my infant daughter. it worked wonders! i poured a little into my palm - maybe two teaspoons - and massaged it into her scalp during her bath. sometimes i would use her baby brush or a wash cloth to massage her scalp. i used a little bit of aveeno baby bath to get the oil off. it took a week or so but it cleared up.

good luck.

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K.P.

answers from Tampa on

Try washing her hair with Head and Shoulders, I know it sounds funny but our peditrician had us use it on my son when he has dry scalp

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J.S.

answers from Jacksonville on

Hi there, even though my daughter is 11 she has ALWAYS had this problem to know it's gotten to be seriously noticable..itchy...bothering her to say the least.. we have tried EVERYTHING........ Cheap to the most expensive and at this very moment the only thing that works is PURE TREE OIL... I buy it at Shally's beauty store and it's just a small bottle of oil that cost $5 but it took about a week of showing improvement and now it's looking good:) Good Luck to you and your daughter.

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C.D.

answers from Tampa on

My 10 week old son has the same thing. He had very dry scalp and was getting a weird kind of bumpy rash on his forehead. I went to the pediatrician and they diagnosed him with seborrheic dermatitis, which is like cradle cap. He told me to use either Selson Blue or Head & Shoulders, but, it had to be the H&S in the dark blue bottle. He said that the shampoo must be a selenium shampoo, not the regular H&S which does not contain selenium. He said to wash the baby's hair and even gently wash his face with it, as his head get better, the rash will go away. within 2 baths I saw a huge difference. I have been using it for 4 weeks now, 2-3 baths a week and it has not come back!

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N.B.

answers from Jacksonville on

Hi A., I would recommend using Arbonne baby shampoo and treat her dry spots with Arbonne's skin conditioning oil. I am 100% sure this will work. If you are concerned about her lack of nutrition, Arbonne has vitamins also. But the dry scalp could just be caused from some of the ingredients in the products you are using. Arbonne's products have natural, botanical ingredients. You can check out these products on www.arbonne.com or view my website leapoffaith.myarbonne.com.

ABOUT ME: I have a little boy that just turned 5 and I have been married for 13 years. I recently resigned from my job of 13 years to be a full time Independent Consultant for Arbonne. My family exclusively uses all of their products. My neighbor sent me an e-mail about this site and you are the first person I have responded to. I really hope I can help!

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T.L.

answers from Sarasota on

My son had this and I was told to have him use the Paul Mitchell Tea Shampoo. It worked great!

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J.D.

answers from Tampa on

Hi A.,

We have had this same problem with my now 4 year old daughter. It is like cradle cap although I believe as they get older it's more like sebhorric dermatitis. What I have found to work well is to rub olive oil (or anything very oily)on the spot and leave it in for awhile. You have to comb at it to loosen it or it won't ever go away. We did see the pediatrician and he gave us a prescription for medicated shampoo but I try not to use it too much. You really don't want to let it go too long b/c eventually, at least on my daughter, it can cause little patches of the hair to come out where the dry skin is. Best of luck to you.

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A.F.

answers from Tampa on

what you are describing sounds like cradle cap. when my son had this problem me pedi recommended that i wash his hair with head and shoulders shampoo and scrub the dry scalp stuff with a soft bristled tooth brush.

i did and it worked. my son still has dandriff and we use head and shoulders on his hair. you can also use selsum blue for dandriff.

S.L.

answers from Orlando on

Hi! I have the exact same problem with my daughter, now 23 months old. I have not been able to find anything that works yet, so I will be looking at your responses and see if I can also benefit from your post. Good luck!

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T.J.

answers from Jacksonville on

My son and daughter both had this problem. I tried so many different remedies and it turns out the simplest things work. Vitamin E oil on the scalp a few hours before bath time worked wonders. Within 2 weeks both children's scalps cleared up. Would definitely recommend this.

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A.P.

answers from Jacksonville on

hi A.. my daughter - just turned 2 this month - also has this problem. i have tried just running a comb thru her hair when i'm done washing and it seems to help. honestly, i haven't gotten too concerned about b/c as you say, it doesn't bother her and i feel like it will eventually go away. you can't see it unless you really look. let me know if you get any other advice, but i think it's normal for little ones! good luck...

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M.H.

answers from Fort Walton Beach on

Hi A.,

Yes, most dry skin, even eczema, psoriasis, dandruff and so on is related to nutrition, even in a 2 year old. Those who have problems like that with half-way decent immune systems can switch to a better shampoo and sometimes that helps. (I can recommend a non-toxic one for kids if you're interested.) But building the immune system is always the first line of defense with any issue. If a child has a strong immune system, there are few problems and the problems they may experience are usually easily rectified.

Is your little one on a good absorbable multi-vitamin? (I can recommend one if you like.) Is your house detoxified from all synthetic chemicals (cleaners and toiletry items)? How much processed food is eaten in your home? If all these things are in good shape, then it may just be the fact you need a GOOD shampoo to help the scalp.

If your house is not detoxed, feel free to go to my website is www.go2harmony.healthyhometour.com and see what you can do to help the situation. If you have any questions, feel free to ask.

Regards,

M.

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C.S.

answers from Tallahassee on

hi there mama-of-baby-with-dry-scalp:

this treatment worked so effectively for my baby Jacob-
it's been really great.
the other treatments I had tried really didn't do much for his increasingly icky looking scalp, and I was getting discouraged.

I do periodic treatments every 6 weeks or so, and I am so happy with his clear and lovely scalp now.

here is the secret for us:
olive oil! (vinegar's good friend)

I learned about this treatment from a little gizmo I bought at CVS- a soft bristled brush to massage away cradle scalp etc build up-
I followed the directions on the back of the package as follows:

apply an oil, such as olive oil, to scalp ( I have done it in the bath, and also directly onto a dry scalp as well)

(olive oil I myself have found is most healthy and best for skin)

massage in thoroughly

rub in to the areas of dryness, patches, or buildup with a comb or soft bristle brush as deeply as you can, but don't irritate the skin or overdo it

leave in for at least 2 hours, preferably overnight

buildup should come off easily using a fine tooth comb(and for my baby jacob, it did come off very easily)

repeat treatment daily for a few days in a row, until the scalp is totally clear and smooth

for bedtime, I just made sure his hair was not too drippy with oil, and I put down a thick towel for him to sleep on

this treatment worked so well, and it is so natural, affordable,a dn healthy for the skin.
Now, I often add a few drops of lavender oil to the oil-
I just pout a little olive oil in my hand, then a drop or two of pure lavender essential oil, and then rub it around on his head, and then use my little baby comb/brush set to gently scrub it in.
he did have rather thick, icky, brown cradle cap type build up on his head before I did this treatment. And now, his little head looks (and smells) just great.

I hope this is helpful!

C.

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C.H.

answers from Naples on

I have a son he is now 7....he had problems with dry itchy scalp and I tried Arbonne ABC baby wash....it has done wonders and he still uses it. I have since started selling and you can check it out on my web site www [email protected]____.com I do not think it has anything to do with nutrition.....I believe in these product and not just because I sell them. I used them well before I started selling them. I know they work!!!!

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D.P.

answers from Jacksonville on

I was trying to remember what we did with our children when their scalp was dry. I think I put baby oil on it. Yes, it looked oily for a little while but it went away.

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L.N.

answers from Gainesville on

My son is 4 and has had scalp issues like this since he was a wee babe. I was never really able to get it to go away completely. His has never seemed to bother him. It is usually just a couple spots here and there.
When my daughter was born, who is 21 months, she had the same thing. I was a bit more proactive with her case (I guess that is what comes with a little experience) and I soaked her head in the bath. Then I rubbed Calendula oil in to her scalp. I let the oil sit on her head for 15 minutes or so and then used a really fine tooth comb to comb "against the grain" really lightly. This worked really well as I was able to comb out all the dead skin without hurting her tender head. Then I just washed her hair again with really gentle shampoo. It worked wonders and hasn't been a problem since.

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B.R.

answers from Tampa on

If it is dry scalp, try these few things: when you shampoo, don't let it sit, rinse it right away; when you use conditioner, try to keep it off of the scalp, conditioner can cause this; try a new conditioner. For the brown patches, you might try putting a tiny little bit of baby oil directly on the patches and work it loose. Hope this helps, God bless you and your family!

B. Reitmeyer
http://www.livetotalwellness.com/belindareitmeyer
http://www.workathomeunited.com/belindareitmeyer

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J.W.

answers from Tampa on

Hi A., I'm interested to see the replies you get, my son who is almost 3 has the same thing. He did have cradles cap almost all over his head when he was a few months old but it cleared up fine, this came back months if not a year later, its not as bad as the first time and it seems to be just two small areas at the front of his scalp on each side. I have also tried numerous things and nothing seems to work. I've not worried about it as it doesn't bother him, bothers him more when I mess with it!!

Jo

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B.G.

answers from Ocala on

i took my daughter to the dr nothing he said worked it wasn't until she was in pre-k and got her first bout of head lice i used olive oil and let it sit over night then combed thru her hair washed it and combed thru again and she never got it again. her was so bad her hair couldn't grow where the patches were and if they got scratched by accident they bled.

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C.C.

answers from Tampa on

Tea tree oil works on almost anything. I often use it on my excema.

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T.B.

answers from Orlando on

It is often nutrional. You could try some yogurt so she gets some active cultures/acidophilus. Often scalp issues are caused by yeast or friendly bacteria inbalances. Oh, and I meant to eat the yogurt, not put it on her head. Although I suppose you could try that too! LOL The medicated shampoos are so strong and chemical, then she'll be stuck using one forever so I personally would definitely try to heal it nutritionally first. I use a jojoba shampoo from the health food store for that very thing. I hope that helps.

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P.G.

answers from Tampa on

My dr. told me to use a tiny tiny bit of gentle Head and
Shoulders shampoo - being careful not to get into eyes.
Also, I would not use vinegar, I would use a small bit of
olive oil, small, so her hair doesn't get greasy. Both my
boys had cradle cap.

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H.C.

answers from Pensacola on

As some of the other moms have said using head and shoulders or shampoos similiar will help. The trick is to let them sit for about 2-3 minutes then rinse. I am a nurse that worked for a dermatologist before moving to Florida. The MD I worked for prescribed this for kids and adults alike all the time. I have a 10 mth old and 9 yr old little girl and they both have this same problem so I use this on them 2-3 times a week with great improvement. It is craddle cap or seborrheic dermatitis. The only thing that causes this is heredity. Its not nutritional or anything. Try the head and shoulders but you have to let it sit and it will help. Good Luck!!

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C.K.

answers from Tampa on

Hi,
My son had this same thing right around his 2 year check up. The dr said not to worry about it, keep shampooing as usual (we used johnson's baby wash) and to make sure to brush over it not avoid it. So i just kept brushing his hair like normal and eventually it went away. it took about 6 months to be completely gone, he did have 2 pretty big patches though. I think if it looks inflamed, or takes a really long time to go away, to take her to the dr it could be something else. Good luck and I'm sure it's not a nutrition problem if it is the same thing my son had.

C.

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G.M.

answers from San Francisco on

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The one that I think may Help You is Tea Tree.
You cannot get these oils in a store because store oils are not therapetic which just means that they are mixed with other things that you MAY not know.
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The Cost is about $35 and if you are not satisfied I will return your money for the amount that you didn't use.
Or you can go to my website and order it yourself on our safe secure site.
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God Bless You
G.

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