Dandruff also known as Seborrheic Dermatitis is actually an extremely common skin condition experienced by most people at some point in their lives. It tends to affect not just the scalp, but also the eyebrows, the ears, the beard, and the hairy part of the chest.
Symptoms of Dandruff
Dandruff signs and symptoms may include:
- Dandruff usually appears as fine, dry and flaky skin on your scalp, hair, eyebrows, beard or mustache, and shoulders.
- Scaly, crusty scalp in infants with cradle cap
- It can sometimes have areas with red or pink skin, signaling inflammation.
- It may also simply show up as white flakes without any scratching or irritation.
- But it may sometimes have burning sensation and itching on the scalp.
Causes of Dandruff
Dandruff may have several causes, including:
- Irritated, dry skin and oily skin
- Not shampooing enough
- Because the scalp is too dry
- Other skin conditions, such as psoriasis and eczema
- Consequently there is a lack of protein in the skin, which becomes dry and flaky.
- Yeast like fungus (malassezia) that feeds on oils on the scalps of most adults.
- Dandruff is more common in men and may become worse by stress, illness, and some hair products.
- when the scalp doesn’t receive a sufficient blood supply or it can be a mild form of seborrheic dermatitis
Home Remedies for Dandruff
Indian Lilac (Neem):
- Boil a handful of neem leaves in four cups of water.
- Cool and strain the solution.
- Use this decoction as a hair rinse two or three times a week. Or
- Make a paste of neem leaves and apply to the scalp. Leave it on for half an hour and then wash the hair with lukewarm water.
Lemon’s acidity helps balance the pH of your scalp and keeps dandruff away.
- Mix the juice of half a lemon in one-quarter cup of plain yogurt.
- Apply it on your hair and scalp.
- Leave it on for about 20 minutes before rinsing it off and shampooing your hair. Or
- Massage your scalp with 2 tablespoons lemon juice and rinse with water.
- Repeat this daily until dandruff disappears.
Egg white and lime:
- Mix two egg whites with the fresh juice of one lime.
- Apply to your hair.
- Let it stay for a half hour, then wash the hair with neem soap.
- Soak two to three tablespoons of fenugreek seeds in water overnight.
- In the morning, grind them into a fine paste.
- You can also add a few teaspoons of plain yogurt to it.
- Apply the paste all over your scalp and leave it in for a few hours.
- Wash the hair thoroughly with soap-nut (Ritha) solution or Shikakai.
- Do this once or twice a week.
Tea Tree Oil:
Tea tree oil is anti-fungal and anti-bacterial in nature, enabling it to exterminate bacterial and yeast formation on the infection prone scalps.
- Add few drops of tea tree oil to shampoo or use a tea tree oil shampoo for its anti fungal properties. Or
- Apply organic tea tree oil in combination with other oils like jojoba or olive oil in order to reduce its concentration and to avoid itching and irritation on sensitive scalps.
Apple Cider Vinegar:
The acidity of apple cider vinegar changes the pH of your scalp, making it harder for yeast to grow.
- Apply a mixture of quarter cup apple cider vinegar with a quarter cup water on your scalp.
- Wrap your head in a towel and let it stay for 15 minutes to an hour, then wash it off.
- Do this twice a week.
Grapefruit Seed Extract:
This kills the fungus.
- Add a few drops of grapefruit seed extract to your regular shampoo.
- Leave the shampoo for 3 to 5 minutes and then rinse it off.
- Massage your scalp with aloe Vera before shampooing.
- The cooling effect of aloe vera soothes the itch caused due to dandruff. Or
- Use 30% aloe lotion twice daily for 4 to 6 weeks.
The green gram powder is a non irritant substance which will remove dirt and soothe the skin. It also hydrates the scalp, resulting in less flaking.
- Mix two tablespoon of green gram powder in half a cup of curd.
- And wash the hair with this mixture twice a week.
Apply basil oil by mixing it with other oils such as lavender and rosemary preferably for an hour or so. This is the best remedy to fight those white flakes. Besides being a dandruff remedy, it also acts as hair conditioner and improves blood circulation promoting healthy hair growth.
Vitamin E Oil:
Apply vitamin E oil or flaxseed oil or olive oil nightly and wash it off in the morning. It soothes and nourishes the scalp.
Do’s for Dandruff
- Eat more fresh fruits and vegetables. Pears, carrots, radishes, celery, spinach, fish, oysters, and brown rice are particularly good for preventing dandruff.
- Eat a whole food diet including high in biotin, such as nuts, fruits, brewer’s yeast, and brown rice.
- Eat yogurt with live cultures.
- Take food rich in zinc, vitamins and minerals.
- Keep hair and scalp clean to avoid accumulation of dead cells.
- Use mild shampoo, use warm water not too hot or not too cold.
- Brush your hair daily to improve the circulation and remove any flakiness.
- Get out in the sun a little, it’ll help your dandruff problem. Ultraviolet light can reduce the scalp inflammation and ease the flaking problem.
Don’ts for Dandruff
- Avoid dairy products, nuts, sugar, gluten, fatty and fried foods which can help prevent dandruff.
- Avoid alcohol-based hair products such as hair sprays, which tend to dry out the scalp, and mousses, gels, and dyes, which may increase irritation and make dandruff worse.
- Do not wash hair too frequently. Shampooing too often may cause dandruff as it can irritate the scalp.
- Avoid irritating shampoo or soaps.
- Do not use hair dryer as it may aggravate the dandruff.
- Avoid stress. Stress affects overall health and can even help trigger dandruff or worsen existing symptoms.
- Do not drink too much alcohol, as they deplete the body of biotin.
When to See a Doctor
- Dandruff does not clear up after using these home remedies.
- Scalp becomes red and develops sore patches or crusts.
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