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Common Ailments

Cradle Cap
Cradle cap is a yellowish, sometimes greasy appearing scale that develops on baby's scalp, behind the ears and/or in other skin folds. If your baby develops cradle cap, use a special shampoo on baby's hair and scalp, along with a soft brush, to remove the scales. Do not treat this condition by using baby oil on the scalp. You may use petroleum jelly sparingly on the face. If the dryness persists, consult your pediatrician.

Ear Infections
Ear infections are one of the most common aliments among infants. Symptoms of an ear infection include irritability or disturbed sleep after an upper respiratory infection, a persistent
temperature for more than 24 hours, pulling or scratching on the ears, refusal to eat and/or a lack of responsiveness to your voice. Antibiotics are the standard treatment, so if you suspect your baby has an ear infection, call your pediatrician.

Babies will become ill often during their first year of life, and many of these illnesses will cause a fever. A fever helps fight infections by turning on the body's immune system. All babies will develop fevers. Call your pediatrician if your baby develops a fever with a rectal temperature of 100.4 F or higher during the first 3 months, or a rectal temperature of 101 F in infants ages 3 to 6 months, and 104 F in a baby 6 months or older.

Inconsolable Crying
Some babies suffer from inconsolable crying, or colic. Inconsolable crying can frustrate parents, but remember, never shake your baby. You can help soothe your baby by holding him tightly or wrapping him snugly in a blanket and rocking him.  Also, simply changing your baby's position will often help soothe him. If you are frustrated and feel the urge to shake your baby, place him in the crib for a few minutes and simply walk away or have someone else take care of him until you are calm. Call your pediatrician if you are unable to console your baby. Never shake your baby.

Jaundice is a common condition that usually shows up shortly after birth. It is caused when a baby's body produces too much bilirubin, causing baby's skin to turn yellow. This yellow color will appear first on the face, then on the chest, stomach and, finally, on the legs. A quick and easy test for jaundice is to gently press on your baby's skin (usually on the tip of his nose or forehead) with your fingertip. When you remove your finger, if you see a yellowish color, contact your pediatrician. If you are concerned about your baby's color, call your pediatrician.

Know When to Call Your Pediatrician