What is dandruff?
The most common condition affecting the scalp is dandruff. It is associated with the dryness of the scalp. The constant renewal of the skin cells on the scalp facilitates the old cells to get pushed to the surface by the new cells. The disorder of the oil-secreting glands of the scalp, known as ‘seborrhea’ causes dandruff – medically known as ‘pityriasis.’ Dandruff is often mistaken for flakes of dry skin from the scalp. Though it’s a scalp-related problem, there is a difference between dandruff and flakes of dry skin from the scalp. The dry skin is less greasy than dandruff and the latter has a unique odor.
Grayish white flakes of skin are produced by dandruff and the flakes can often be noticed on the shoulders and hair. Itching and soreness can also be experienced on the scalp. A more severe form of dandruff can affect the skin around the eyebrows, forehead, face, ears, and nose. The skin is inflamed, red, and crusty and the scales are yellow and greasy looking. Psoriasis is another condition that affects the scalp.
Red patches with silvery-white scales begin to appear. The skin around the knees, elbow, and ears can also be affected. Dandruff is not visible to the naked eye in the beginning stages. It becomes visible as a result of the growth of bacteria and or as a result of problems with seborrhoeic scalp conditions. Dandruff is visible as large pieces of dead skin.
Dandruff Causes and diagnosis
The dead skin cells have to shed regularly. This is facilitated by brushing the hair, the absence of which results in the formation of dandruff. Inflamed or itchy scalp increases the rate of shedding of dead skin cells. Lack of vitamin B and essential fatty acids may result in the formation of dandruff. The condition can become worse if sugars and carbohydrates are high in the diet.
An overgrowth of yeast fungus (pityrosporum ovale) can lead to dandruff. The condition improves in the summer and gets worse in winter because UV light from the sun works against pityrosporum ovale. People affected with HIV, and other neurological illnesses are affected by Seborrhoeic dermatitis. It’s called dandruff if only the scalp is affected.
If the scaling is very severe and affects other areas, it may be seborrhoeic dermatitis, which is a more severe form of dandruff. If the scales are silvery-white with red, inflamed patches, this is called psoriasis. It is best to seek medical supervision if these symptoms begin to show up.
How to Get Rid of Dandruff
Margarine and other oils should be removed from your diet. Rub the sesame oil into your scalp; it prevents the skin from peeling. The wearing of hats should be avoided unless they can be sterilized before use every time. Scratching while applying shampoo should be prohibited; just rub gently because fingernails damage the roots. Forget your hair dye; it reduces the number of useful bacteria.
While choosing an anti-dandruff shampoo to get rid of dandruff, check out the presence of zinc-pyrithione or any zinc supplement which is a good anti-dandruff agent. Vitamins B6, B12, and Vitamin F should be in your diet to get the right nutrition which helps to get rid of dandruff.
Even mental stress plays a small role in the formation of dandruff. When you are stressed out, you tend to scratch your scalp which is not a big thing but contributes to the formation of dandruff. Another method to try is straight apple cider vinegar. First, simply wash your hair.
And after that, you can pour some vinegar onto your hair, and then scrub it into the scalp. If you have psoriasis or any unhealed scratch or scab, it may burn. Rinse the area with water if it burns repeatedly. Leave on for 10-15 minutes and then rinse with water. The vinegar smell will disappear once your hair is dry. Repeat daily for about a week.
To get rid of dandruff, you could mix essential oils of cedarwood (a few drops) cypress, and juniper (every ten drops) in 50ml of carrier oil. Rub well into the scalp and leave for one hour. To remove, rub neat, mild shampoo into the hair, then wash out with warm water. To get rid of dandruff, use the same quantities of the oils in 600ml of warm water. Stir well and use as a final rinse.
Dandruff can be prevented by regular daily brushing, washing your hair a minimum of three times a week, using a medically prescribed shampoo every 1-2 weeks to prevent a recurrence, rinsing your hair thoroughly after shampooing, and avoiding the usage of chemicals on the scalp.
Chemicals such as the ones used in hair coloring should also be avoided. Make sure that you have enough vitamins such as zinc, beta-carotene, B6, B12, and selenium in your diet. You can reduce the frequency of bouts of seborrhoeic dermatitis by washing hair regularly with medicated anti-fungal shampoo.