Dandruff! Let’s talk about that itchy scalp
About 50% of people struggle with dandruff so there’s nothing to be ashamed of. It is also the most commercially exploited skin disease/ disorder by personal care industries (Ranganathan S, 2010). Usually, people focus on flakes whereas if accompanied by itching, it tends to be unbearable and lead to frustration. I will be sharing what your itchy scalp might be trying to communicate, common symptoms and a few solutions.
Dry air is a huge contributor to flaky scalp especially during winter and fall. There are a number of causes to a dry, flaky, itchy scalp;
- Some products may cause your scalp to be itchy and have red patches as a result of contact dermatitis.
- Irritated and oily skin
- Excessive skin cell growth due to yeast that aggravates your scalp
- Skin cell accumulation that creates an itchy scalp and flakes as a result of limited shampooing
Here are 3 of the many home remedies you could try:
Disclaimer: Do a patch test to see if you might be sensitive to the product
Keep in mind that consistency is key. Using something once will not alleviate the problem.
- Apple Cider Vinegar (ACV)
As you might be aware, apple cider vinegar has a tonne of health benefits. This is one of the most commonly used natural remedy. This is my personal go to remedy. I struggled with dandruff (huge flakes plus red patches on my scalp) about 2 months ago because of the product I was using, but when I started my weekly apple cider vinegar rinses on my hair instead of using shampoo my scalp healed.
However, there are no studies to support the following claims but are solely based on personal accounts rather than facts and testimonies of others all over the internet, and now mine too.
ACV is said to balance the skin pH to reduce the growth of fungus based on test studies that cause dandruff
Mix 1 part ACV to 1 part water and spritz your hair with the mixture while massaging it into your scalp. Let it sit for about 15 mins then rinse it out. Repeat weekly until symptoms disappear.
*There will be a detailed post on why Apple Cider Vinegar was a MUST add to my regimen*
- Try Tea Tree oil
Many people have used tea tree oil for decades to treat acne and psoriasis because of its proven anti-inflammatory and anti-microbial properties that may assist in getting rid of dandruff symptoms.
However, some people are sensitive to tea tree oil and therefore, it shouldn’t be added directly to the skin. Rather dilute it by adding drops to coconut oil or any other carrier oil before applying.
- Coconut Oil
This is another commonly used natural remedy for dandruff. It also has multiple health benefits. Dandruff may develop due to dry skin. Coconut oil improves scalp hydration to prevent dryness.
Eczema is at times a contributor to dandruff. A few research sources found that coconut oil could aid in the treatment of eczema.
Apply directly to the scalp and massage daily until the symptoms disappear.
When to see a doctor
Most dandruff cases are easily treated but if the itching starts to interfere with your daily duties, sometimes accompanied by redness or swells, consult your doctor.
Have any of you struggled with dandruff? What did you use that solved the problem?
*Remember, you are marked by flawless craftsmanship*