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First, a picture:

enter image description here

She is 3.5 months old. She was born with quite long hair, some fell but now it looks like she has a ring around the head, just above the ears, where hair is really thin.

My gf's take on it is that since we (I) carry her too much, he head rubs in this area and the hair falls. When I hold her, there is definitely contact between my arm and this area.

I'm curious if this is a common hair loss pattern for that age? or if it is possible that rubbing while carrying creates the hair loss? When I look only, they only talk about newborns losing their hair, but nothing about children that age.

  • How much "tummy time" is the baby getting? – anongoodnurse Jul 26 at 3:02
  • A few times a day, she just learned to hold her head up while on the tummy. In the past few weeks she started to push a lot on her legs to move forward so there is definitely some rubbing the hair from playing too – Thomas Jul 26 at 9:19
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    Side note: Carrying her “too much” isn’t an issue, we humans are built to be carried around by others while small. – Stephie Jul 27 at 5:28
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This is very common. The main thing is not to worry. Most babies lose some of their hair, only to grow more later.

And some babies lose all their hair.

Your girlfriend could be correct - often it's rubbing on common parts of the head, especially if you always hold them against you the same way, but hormone changes also have a part to play.

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    Only thing i'd add to this answer is: patterns of hair loss probably due to baby laying in one position, will likely stop as soon as baby starts moving more on her own. – Nimloth Jul 25 at 19:27
  • she's starting to sleep with the head on the side, so we'll see how it evolves :) – Thomas Jul 25 at 23:45
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    It's entirely normal. The most common pattern is that most or all of the "newborn hair" falls out between 4 and 6 months. Babies that are around 6-7 months old are often completely bald. New hair grows after that. Don't worry. Your baby is normal. – Dawood ibn Kareem Jul 27 at 21:37
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    I had a couple kids who went through a "Friar Tuck" phase. It's a lot cuter on babies than it is on adults... – Conor Mancone Jul 28 at 17:02
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I'm going to add to @Rory's answer because there's an important issue which wasn't completely addressed.

My gf's take on it is that since we (I) carry her too much, he head rubs in this area and the hair falls. When I hold her, there is definitely contact between my arm and this area.

Babies have big heads compared to their bodies, and the head weighs a lot. So, when sleeping on a firm mattress, there will be spots that hair has rubbed off (partly hair that might fall out anyway.) Laying in the crib in the same position also shapes their skulls. That's one reason why supervised tummy time is so important.

But the way you hold her isn't an issue unless she doesn't like it! :) Your arms are much more giving/softer than her mattress. The way you hold her is not a factor in her hair loss. Your arm cradles her head. Her mattress does not (for good reason!)

As her neck strength increases, you'll start holding her differently, in more ways.

Her hair will grow back. It will seem like it takes forever, but two years from now, you'll wonder when all that hair appeared!

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My baby was born with a full head of straight dark hair. At around 4-5 months it all fell out, he went bald for a few months, and then it grew back a pale golden blonde and slightly wavy!

His doctor said there is an aspect of it rubbing off on the crib, the carseat, due to cradle cap, etc, but it's more of a developmental thing. Some children noticeably lose their 'baby hair' before a new head of hair comes in, and for some the two things happen at once, so it's not easy to see the change happening. Some don't have much or any 'baby hair' at all and are bald at first.

Either way it's a cosmetic issue, and will work itself out in the next several months to a year. It's not likely to be substantially improved by holding her less (and the benefits of frequent carrying definitely outweigh the chance that you're making the baby hair fall out sooner).

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Very normal. My child was born with a full head of hair, then at 3 months old went full Picard. She is now 3.4 years old and has the most beautiful golden mop of golden bronze curls. Fret not!

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Hair of new born babies are quite thin and soft. You do not need to worry in case the baby has thin hair or less hair. As the baby grows new hair grows shedding the old one slowly.

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Are the bald parts where the skull plates (rather, the seams) are, in which case it could be growth causing it?

I'm pretty sure at least one of mine had that lovely tennis ball effect at some point. And as others have said, it grows back anyway.

I wouldn't worry unless it starts falling out in clumps, in which case see the doctor.

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  • It’s not where the plates join. It’s wider and goes around the head. It’s like the long hair are falling but there are short hairs below – Thomas Jul 27 at 23:31
  • -1 for guessing, which doesn't really help. Baby hair loss doesn't follow bone growth at all. Bones grow slowly enough (normally) for everything around them to grow as well. – anongoodnurse Jul 28 at 15:22

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