Some babies, when premature, are born covered in lanugo, a hair that can be long and dark. In our Babyshopclub article we explain what its functions are during pregnancy, and how it comes off the body of the newborn.
Lanugo, is the hair that some babies present when they are newborns, and is part of the vernix caseosa, a thin layer also known as sebaceous, which covers the baby’s delicate skin to protect it from the aggressions of some substances with irritating capacity found in the amniotic fluid.
It begins to form at the end of the first trimester and to come off in most children at the end of the pregnancy, around week 40. Many newborns have tufts of that lanugo detached at birth, especially in the folds.
Some children at birth have almost no more. This means that the amniotic fluid has given up and has come out of the delivery without us seeing it. Since when it came off it was suspended in the amniotic fluid that surrounds the baby and that it swallows. Do not worry about it. It’s been like this forever.
Others can have a lot even when they are born. The normal thing is that when it is like this, it comes off almost completely in the first weeks of life. But some can keep it for months.
Premature babies and Lanugo
The more premature a baby is at birth, the more likely it is to have a gap. In fact, it is one of the signs that can tell us that a baby is younger than we think.
It is not that they have it to be more protected at birth because they are premature. It is simply a process that has not given you time to complete.
Baby lanugo care
It does not require any care from the parents. It is washed when bathing normally. And whatever we do ends up coming off when it plays. In many babies in the first days of life. But in some it takes months to disappear.
When he is late, some parents ask me if he is going to stay with him forever. And if they can do something to remove it, because they don’t like the way it looks.
It is true that it can sometimes be very striking and abundant, especially on the forehead, ears and back and shoulders.
Hypertrichosis is an exception. They are people who have a genetic alteration that makes them have much more hair covering their body than normal.
It is a hair more abundant and stronger than lanugo that can cover the entire body. We have all seen images of “children or werewolves”.
They are people who suffer from this problem. And it is a problem because it can generate social rejection. Unfortunately it is human nature. We are suspicious of what is different, without realizing that we all really are.
In these cases, laser hair removal can be considered as a solution. It depends a lot on the parents at first. In the future, if we do nothing, it will be the child who decides.
When does baby lanugo appear?
Lanugo appears on the fetal head approximately between weeks 13 and 16 of gestation and by week 20 it covers the entire body. It is lost at approximately 40 weeks of gestational age. However, many babies have lanugo at birth on the body, even sometimes quite long and dark lanugo.
Lanugo in premature babies is usually quite common. The more premature a baby is at birth the more lanugo it can have. In fact, it is one of the signs that can indicate to us that a baby is of a lower gestational age than we think. As you will see in the following article you can know the physical aspect of premature babies and among them, you will find a thin layer of hair, the lanugo.
The lanugo appears inside the mother’s womb. As we said, it is part of the development of the fetus. It is not that it just appears, it is that the baby can be born with lanugo even covering parts of its body. The most common is the presence of lanugo in the baby’s ears or lanugo in the baby’s forehead.
Some children at birth have almost no more. This means that the amniotic fluid has given up and has come out of the delivery without us seeing it. But being was. It is for example in meconium, the dark poop of the first days of life, since when it came off it was suspended in the amniotic fluid that surrounds the baby and that it swallows.
When does baby lanugo go away?
The birth of a baby with lanugo may be an indicator of premature birth. Or some babies may be born with fairly long, dark lanugo. In either case, the lanugo will fall off on its own within a few weeks after delivery and birth.
The lanugo falls off as time passes. According to how the baby matures, this hair will gradually disappear from his body. Babies who are born with a lot of lanugo, it is normal for it to come off almost completely in the first weeks of life. But some can keep it for months.
It is common to observe certain bald spots or total baldness during the fall of the lanugo after childbirth, since one of the characteristics of the lanuga in babies is that it is very finite and constant rubbing accelerates its fall. This is resolved quickly, since in a short time babies end up having their head covered in very shiny hair. The quality and quantity of it will depend on genetic factors.