Your baby’s body hair is determined by his or her genes. There are many moms who worry about the presence of excess body hair in their babies. This can be due to cosmetic reasons. There isn’t really much you can do to remove baby body hair. Also you may start to notice less and less of it as your baby grows older.
You are sure to receive many tips and tricks from well meaning elders for removing unwanted baby body hair. However, you need to remember that your baby’s skin is very delicate and exposing it to harsh substances can cause more harm than good.
However, if you are indeed thinking about getting rid of your baby’s body hair, here are a few home remedies that you can try.
Why does my baby have visible hair all over the body?
The hair visible on your newborn baby’s skin is natural. It is fine but clearly visible. This type of hair on a newborn baby is called lanugo, derived from the Latin word lana, meaning wool. Your baby is more likely to have visible lanugo if he or she is born premature.
This hair can be seen on the back, shoulders, forehead, ears and face of your baby. It starts developing at 18 to 20 weeks of gestation. In some cases the baby sheds the lanugo while inside the fetus. However, many babies are born with it intact.
The lanugo is naturally shed by babies after they are born. It might take anywhere between a few weeks to a few months after birth to go away completely. There is no reason to worry if your baby is born with intact lanugo. Chances are they will shed it soon enough.
Is Lanugo normal in babies?
Yes, absolutely! It is grown by all babies as a means insulation while in the womb. It starts growing from about the 18th to 20th week of gestation. At this time your baby has little or no body fat to keep warm and uses the laguna for that purpose.
Some babies start shedding the laguna while in the fetus. If your baby is born with the laguna intact it is nothing to worry about. The soft downy and visible hair that your baby is born with allover the body will soon start to shed naturally and be replaced by finer and less visible body hair.
What home rememdies can I use to get rid of my baby’s body hair?
The laguna that your baby is born with is more than likely to disappear after a few weeks or months from the birth. Some elders suggest rubbing the hair to help shed it faster. However, it is best left up to nature to take its course.
However, if you really want to get rid of your baby’s body hair, here are few home remedies for you to try. Just remember that your baby’s skin is very fragile and sensitive. So be careful of what you apply on his or her skin.
Home Remedies to Remove Baby Body Hair
Here are some well known home remedies to help your baby get rid of body hair.
- Gently massage your baby with a mild and gentle baby oil. Do this twice daily, mornings and evenings for a few days. You can see the reduction in the visible body hair.
- Make a paste of sandalwood powder, milk, and turmeric powder. Apply this paste on your baby’s body where there is visible laguna. Rub the paste gently to remove it. Do this everyday for few weeks before your baby’s bath.
- Make a soft dough with 2 spoons of wheat flour and a spoon of gram flour. Roll the dough into a small ball and rub it on your baby’s body gently. Do this everyday before bath time and see the visible body hair of your baby reduce effectively.
- Massage your baby with olive oil first. Then apply a paste of finely powdered split red lentils and milk cream. Massage this paste gently over the areas that have visible body hair. See a marked difference in a few days.
- You can take a piece of bread dipped in unboiled milk and massage all over your baby’s body. However, remember that unboiled milk can contain a lot of bacteria that can be very harmful for your baby. Bacteria such as e.coli and salmonella, that cause illnesses such as diarrhea and dysentery can be present in unboiled milk. So be careful when using such items on your new born baby.
If your baby is born with fine visible hair on hhis or her body it is completely normal. It is usually shed in the first few weeks after birth. If your baby has not shed the initial hair within a maximum period of six months, or is developing darker hair, then you must consult a doctor. Such a condition could be an indicator of congenital adrenal hyperplasia (CAH).
CAH signifies the lack of a certain enzyme in your baby’s body. It causes reduction or lack of production of the hormone called cortisol or aldosterone. This further leads to elevated secretion of androgen – the male hormone. Androgen is responsible for excessive hair growth.
CAH can affect both male and female babies. It can also lead to greater complications such as low sodium in the blood. This in turn can cause your baby’s heart to function improperly.
If you do decide to use any of the above home remedies to rid your baby of body hair, remember to be gentle. While massaging, do not massage much over your baby’s spine area or press that area. This is because the spinal area of your newborn is very delicate and should be handled with utmost care.