hairy baby

Although some newborns are covered in hair, this does not guarantee that they will be hairy babies. Newborn body hair, also known as lanugo, is described by Dr. Dina Kulik.

Why is Your Baby Hairy?

Some newborns are born with lanugo, a soft, fine hair that grows on their shoulders and back. A hairy baby is thought to keep your baby warm until he has enough fat to do the job, and it is not a good indicator of how hairy he will be as he gets older. Lanugo develops in all babies in utero around 16 weeks, and most of them shed it by month seven or eight of pregnancy. Some babies are born with it, though, especially those who are born prematurely. There is no need to be concerned about this extra layer of hair; it will fall out over the course of the first few weeks of life.

Heartburn, Skin Color, and a Full Head of Hair

One well-known myth states that if you experience heartburn while pregnant, your will have a hairy baby. The folklore surrounding pregnancy has long included this way of thinking. One study in a small group of mostly white women discovered that women who reported more moderate to severe heartburn at 36 weeks gestation were more likely to report having a newborn with an average or above-average hair count. In this study, it was also found that women with little or no heartburn reported having babies with little or no hair. The study’s authors reasoned that, in some pregnant women, variations in maternal hormones may affect the esophageal sphincter’s opening, increasing the likelihood of heartburn. As a side note, the study discovered that newborns of African Americans, who made up a very small portion of the study population, were more likely to have thick hair. A connection between darker skin tone and newborn hair fullness has also been found in other studies.

Genetic Conditions

There are a number of reasons why a hairy baby. In addition to being completely normal, excessive hair growth can also be a symptom of fetal drug exposure or certain genetic disorders like leprechaunism, Hurler syndrome, trisomy 18, Coffin-Siris syndrome, Cornelia de Lange syndrome, and Coffin syndrome. Particular attention should be paid to any fullness of the baby’s hair that is concentrated in one area of the head because this could also be a sign of trouble. It is crucial to keep in mind that certain genetic conditions that cause fullness in the hair typically also exhibit other symptoms. So, unless other problems are present, having a newborn with a full head of hair does not indicate anything unusual.

Hair Growth Cycle

There are many things that can affect the hair growth of a hairy baby. This small study emphasizes the effects of racial/ethnicity and maternal hormones on newborns’ hair growth. The fetal and newborn hair growth cycles must first be understood in order to comprehend the function of hormones as well as the relationship between skin tone and hormones.

1) Anagen or growth phase: hair follicles grow on the newborn scalp starting at 10 weeks gestation and continuing until 18 to 20 weeks gestation

2) Catagen phase or short phase: hair follicles curl up at 24 to 28 weeks gestation

3) Telogen or resting phase: hair is shed

Keep in mind that all three phases are taking place simultaneously.

In light of this, how do these phases relate to the small study we previously discussed? Heartburn may indicate that a woman has higher estrogen levels. Increased levels of maternal hormones like estrogen boost the number of hair follicles in the anagen or growth phase and reduce telogen or resting phase hair loss. What about the effect of darker skin? Darker-skinned newborns take longer to enter the telogen phase, during which time hair begins to fall out.

Although the number of hairy babies develop in utero can vary, it stays the same after birth. The hair on the front and sides of the head that has grown after birth is beginning to enter the telogen phase, during which it sheds. A newborn’s hair is also beginning to grow on the back of the head at this time, this hair will eventually fall out 8 to 12 weeks after birth.

The first hair of a newborn is short, fine, and uncolored. At 3 to 7 months after birth, “intermediate” scalp hair develops. A child’s full head of mature, colored hair will start to appear around the age of two as the follicle structure matures and begins to express color.

Is It Normal for My Baby to Be Hairy?

It appears that some patches of your baby’s lanugo, a fine, wispy layer of hair that covers all unborn children in the womb, may still be present. By the end of pregnancy, babies begin to lose the majority of their hair, but some hair may continue to grow for a few weeks or months after birth. Although a hairy baby can happen to any baby, preemies are more likely to experience it, and darker-skinned infants tend to show it more obviously. You shouldn’t attempt to remove Lanugo because it is completely normal. Some people might advise you to rub the hair in hopes of making it go away, but this is a myth that will probably only irritate your baby’s skin. You can relax knowing that in a few months, your baby will eventually shed this body hair.

Parents don’t worry about your hairy baby, heartburn, skin color, and a full head of hair, hair growth cycle, and genetic condition will influence the baby’s hair.