Cradle cap is most common in babies in the first few months of life, and it generally goes away on its own by 6 to 12 months of age. You don't have to do anything to treat cradle cap. But if you want to try to treat it, rub a small amount of olive oil or baby oil into your baby's scalp to help soften and loosen the scales. Then you can wash your baby's scalp with baby shampoo and gently try to brush off the scales with a soft brush or a towel.
Your baby's cradle cap will probably clear up in a few months. But she's over 6 months and still has a lot of cradle cap, be sure to have the doctor check her scalp. She might recommend that you wash her hair with a medicated seborrhea shampoo that contains selenium, salicylic acid or tar. Be careful, however, because these shampoos are irritating if they get in her eyes.
If the cradle cap is very red and cracking, the doctor might recommend over-the-counter hydrocortisone cream dabbed on her scalp a couple times a day, which may help reduce the inflammation. Occasionally the doctor may determine that the scalp has a fungal or bacterial infection and prescribe anti-fungal or antibiotic cream or ointment to treat it.
Our parenting advice is given as suggestions only. We recommend you also consult your healthcare provider, and urge you to contact them immediately if your question is urgent or about a medical condition.