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Like many things in life, the causes of an itchy scalp and dandruff, and how to get rid of them, are more complicated than you thought.
It’s winter, I thought. the rest of me the skin is dry and cracked. need something better hydration than it would be in summer. Shouldn’t that apply to my scalp as well?
Turns out the answer is no.
“Dry scalp is not similar to dry skin,” said Dr. Julia Tzu, founder and director of Wall Street Dermatology. “It’s a completely different condition. It has nothing to do with how dry the climate is. It has more to do with the amount of yeast on the scalp, and it also has to do with the amount of stress someone is experiencing.”
Tzu said that when we talk about dry scalp, we’re often referring to dandruff (the medical term is seborrheic dermatitis), which can be caused by a variety of factors.
Dandruff is another way the body can physically respond to stress, and scalp yeast loads also tend to be higher for people with oilier skin, people with thicker hair, and people who wash their hair. less frequently.
The last part may seem counterintuitive, as hair seems to dry out the more you wash it and Dryness causes scales in other parts of the body.
However, the scalp is an entirely different beast, according to Tzu. What happens there is not necessarily reflected in the touch or texture of our hair.
How to get rid of dandruff
Since oil and yeast on the scalp can trigger dandruff, Tzu recommends washing your hair more frequently if you’re experiencing flaking. You may feel compelled to wash less if your scalp feels dry or irritated, but a buildup of oil could be perpetuating the condition.
Anti-dandruff shampoos are a great over-the-counter option for treating dandruff. You can rotate them in your washing routine as often as your doctor or instructions recommend. Tzu advises looking for active yeast-controlling ingredients like zinc pyrithione, selenium sulfide or ketoconazole.
But there are different types of skin conditions that can affect your scalp, and the ingredients you need may depend on your particular skin.
If you have small scales scattered throughout your hair, it is most likely the result of seborrheic dermatitis or dandruff. A medicated shampoo with one of those yeast-controlling ingredients is the way to go.
Psoriasis, an immune system-related skin condition that causes itchy, scaly patches on the body, is another possible cause of scaly scalp. For scalp psoriasis, where thick, crusty plaques cover the scalp’s surface, Tzu said products with coal tar or potentially something exfoliating to help slough off dead skin should be considered.
If your scalp just feels a little dry with no flakes or signs of psoriasis, some type of moisturizing scalp serum it may be all you need. Tzu described a kind of therapeutic ladder: Treatment depends on the severity of your symptoms, and it’s always best to see a dermatologist in case a prescription treatment is his best option.
With any medicated shampoo and a general increase in washing to treat your scalp, it’s not uncommon for your hair to feel drier. Tzu’s advice for this is to massage the shampoo directly into the roots of the hair and scalp and avoid lathering the ends as much as possible. He can continue using his regular conditioners or conditioning treatments on the lengths and ends to maintain his. soft and shiny hair.