your ques­tions an­swered by our ex­perts

The soft spots on my baby’s head (the fontanelle) are re­ally scar­ing me. I’m afraid touch­ing them will hurt her.

Your Baby & Toddler - - Sponsored Page - SR BURGIE IRE­LAND AN­SWERS mid­wife

Fon­tanelles, so called be­cause the pul­sa­tions that can be felt through this thin mem­brane were once thought to be “lit­tle foun­tains”, are tougher than we re­alise. It’s nat­u­ral to feel a bit neu­rotic about dam­ag­ing your baby when older women tell you not to touch th­ese soft spots, but they re­ally are quite harm­less. The pos­te­rior fontanelle (which you’ll find to­wards the back of the skull) is roughly tri­an­gu­lar in shape and usu­ally closes after 12 weeks. I find that moth­ers are not as aware of this fontanelle as they are of the an­te­rior di­a­mond shaped soft-spot on their baby’s skull that closes from one year to 18 months. By all means, be gen­tle when wash­ing your baby’s hair, and gen­tly mas­sage the area cov­er­ing the fontanelle with the pad of your fin­ger. If it’s ne­glected, this is where cra­dle-cap or der­mati­tis can de­velop when dead skin cells are not washed off. You can use a soft baby-brush to brush your baby’s hair – es­pe­cially if it is quite thick.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from South Africa

© PressReader. All rights reserved.