Cradle cap is the greasy, yellow scaly patches that sometimes appear on the scalps of young babies.
It is common, harmless and doesn’t usually itch or cause discomfort. Do not pick at the scales as this can cause an infection. Cradle cap is not contagious and is not caused by poor hygiene or an allergy.
It usually appears in babies in the first two months and clears up without treatment within weeks to a few months.
Most cases of cradle cap clear up on their own without the need for treatment within weeks to a few months.
Tips to help reduce the build-up of scales on the scalp:
If these methods don’t work, speak to your pharmacist about using a greasy emollient or soap substitute, such as emulsifying ointment.
There is usually no need to see your GP if your baby has cradle cap. However, you may want to ask them for advice if there is swelling to the scalp or if the cradle cap spreads to other parts of the body.
Chickenpox is common and mostly affects children, although you can get it at any age. It usually gets better by itself within a week without needing to see a GP.
Chickenpox starts with red spots, they can appear anywhere on the body. The spots fill with fluid and the blisters may burst. They might spread or stay in a small area.The spots scab over. More blisters might appear while others scab over.
It can be worrying as a parent when your child is poorly.
The tools on this page are aimed at helping you identify common conditions and illnesses that may affect your child and if you can care for them at home or if you need to seek medical help.
This visual guide from NHS Choices will help you identify common illnesses and conditions that may affect your child and if you can care for them at home.
Childhood Illnesses – a visual guide
Its normal for babies to develop skin rashes, but its important to know the difference between a minor irritation and a condition that needs medical attention. This visual guide from NHS Choices helps you familiarise yourself with the different ones.
Scabies is a contagious skin condition caused by tiny mites that burrow into the skin.
Scabies is usually spread through prolonged periods of skin-to-skin contact with an infected person, or through sexual contact.
It can take up to eight weeks for the symptoms of scabies to appear after the initial infection. This is known as the incubation period.
Threadworms, also known as pinworms, are tiny parasitic worms that infect the large intestine of humans. Threadworms are a common type of worm infection in the UK, particularly in children under the age of 10.
The worms are white and look like small pieces of thread. You may notice them around your child’s bottom or in their poo.
They don’t always cause symptoms, but people often experience itchiness around their bottom or vagina. It can be worse at night and disturb sleep.
Threadworm is part of the Think Pharmacy Minor Ailments Scheme so your local Pharmacist can recommend and prescribe treatment.
Everyone in your household will need to be treated as there’s a high risk of the infection spreading. This includes those who don’t have any symptoms of an infection.
During treatment and for a few weeks afterwards, it’s also important to follow strict hygiene measures to avoid spreading the threadworm eggs. This includes regularly vacuuming your house and thoroughly washing your bathroom and kitchen.
If you’re pregnant or breastfeeding, hygiene measures are usually recommended without medication. This is also often the case for young children.
You can find your nearest pharmacy at NHS Choices.
Oral thrush in babies and young children is a fungal infection in the mouth that’s usually harmless and easily treatable.
Signs of oral thrush in babies
The main sign of oral thrush is a white coating on your baby’s tongue, although there may also be white patches elsewhere in the mouth.
This coating may look like curd or cottage cheese and usually can’t be rubbed off easily.
If your baby has a white coating on their tongue that does rub off easily, it’s more likely to be milk coating the tongue and not thrush.
Babies may not seem bothered by the patches, but they may be reluctant to feed – or keep detaching from the breast during feeds – if they’re sore.
There may also be associated nappy rash caused by the same infection that needs to be treated as well.