Why Do Babies Have Back Hair
Baby’s hair on their back is one of the first things people notice when they’re born. But if bub comes out with back hair, you may want to know why.
This body hair is called lanugo and so you’re in the know, it’s pronounced ‘lan-you-go’. Lanugo is a very fine and downy hair sometimes present on a newborn baby’s body at birth. Much finer and delicate than adult body hair (thank goodness), it actually covers baby by around week 20 as she grows in your womb.
It begins to “grow” in the last 3 months of pregnancy and most babies are born with this very fine hair on their backs, shoulders, ears and forehead. This undercoat usually falls off within the first 5 weeks after birth, but in some babies, this undercoat continues to “stay” for a few more months.
By the time your baby turns 1 year old, most of this “excess” hair will have fallen off. A few still have to live with this undercoat until 2 – 3 years old if the child has dark skin.
What’s it’s purpose?
The purpose of lanugo is basically to protect your bub’s delicate skin from the amniotic fluid in your womb. It also helps a waxy white substance known as vernix caseosa stick to the skin which helps to provide lubrication for birth.
So why was my baby born with back hair?
Bubs born with a hairy fleece is nothing to worry about, some are just a bit slower at shedding this hair than others. Not surprisingly, Lanugo is especially common in early baby bubs, but some full-term babies can still have some la.nugo pre.sent.
Therefore, it is best to ignore these hairy areas, especially when their length is unchanged. If these hairs become thick, long and darkening, it could be an imbalance of hormones in the body and then you need to take your baby to see the doctor right away.