Most parents, specifically mothers, want their newborn babies having a soft, supple skin and a luscious mane. The desire is more pronounced if you have a baby girl. Many mothers feel and complain that their baby does not have enough hair, or the hair is really thin. This feeling often puts mothers at the end of their wits and they start looking for remedies to promote hair growth. In some cultures a ‘mundan’ (मुंडन) is performed, which is again believed to increase hair thickness and growth. However, mothers tend to continuously worry about their baby’s hair.
What needs to be understood here that babies’ scalps are very sensitive, and scalp care is a huge must to prevent fungal or bacterial infections such as a cradle cap. Though shaving the head has a major advantage of cleaning the scalp, yet it cannot be said that shaving promotes hair growth. This is so that hair grows from hair follicle which is located beneath the skin. When you shave the head, the follicle does not get altered, but the hair feel thicker since it grows together and in the same length. The type of hair your baby has or will have, largely depends on genetics. Moreover, many parents complain that the baby’s hair does not come on the bottom and sides after having a ‘mundan’ (मुंडन). Again, there is nothing to worry as the hair will come in some time. Click here to read more on mundan or head tonsuring ceremony.
The first and foremost thing is – never attempt to use adult products on your baby. Use specific baby products in your baby’s hair care regime as adult products contain chemicals which can be harmful for the baby. The baby comb should also be soft and gentle. You too will need to be very patient and gentle when dealing with your baby’s head. Your baby’s locks, straight, curly, thick or thin will look best when handled with care and compassion.
Washing the baby’s hair is the most difficult part of your baby care regime. First, it is imperative to hold the head tightly, second the shampoo needs to be baby-friendly and third, the scalp should be cleaned properly. You should also keep talking to the baby in soft tones so as to ensure that she enjoys her bath thoroughly. Gentle baby shampoo is only recommended as other shampoos can dry the scalp leaving flaky skin. You can read more about washing baby’s hair by clicking here.
Oiling the baby’s hair is not recommended because it dries the scalp and can clog the pores. Many parents think that applying oil to the baby’s head will foster hair growth, but this is largely a myth. You can simply massage her baby lotion onto her scalp and hair, following up with baby petroleum jelly. Baby oil formulated with vitamin E, aloe Vera and other essential oils can also be used to sustain moisture in your baby’s hair. Exercise caution though because some scented oils can irritated the baby. Gently massaging the baby’s scalp can be a good stimulation for the baby, however, too much oil can clog the pores and the scalp could get infected. In fact, all babies shed their hair once they are about 4 months of age, and then new hair that grows may or may not even be the same.
Once your baby is a little older, you can also use pure, natural oil – such as almond or olive oil, which will help provide additional nutrition to the baby’s scalp.
Prevalent across nations, many mother think that feeding their newborn with cow’s milk will expedite hair growth. There’s surely no wonder food that can make a person’s hair grow fast, hence the stress should be on feeding a well-balanced, age specific diet to your baby. Never switch to cow’s milk before the baby turns one and never attempt to feed any foods that are not considered safe for babies.
The bottom line here is, that you should not worry too much about your baby’s hair. It will happen eventually with time. And whether the baby has thick, thin, black, brown, curly or straight hair is more dependent on the genetics than oiling. Once your baby is big enough, you can use oiling and other hair care methods to ensure her locks stay nice and thick.