Dandruff is a chronic and common scalp condition characterized by flaking of the skin on the scalp. Dandruff is not contagious or serious.
Dandruff can often be controlled.
The symptoms of dandruff are easy to spot: white, oily looking flakes of dead skin spreading through the hair and shoulders, and possibly an itchy, peeling scalp.
Some examples of medical problems that may be related to dandruff include the following:
Irritated and oily skin (seborrheic dermatitis)
Seborrheic dermatitis can affect the scalp and other areas with abundant sebaceous glands, such as the eyebrows, sides of the nose and back of the ears, breastbone, groin area, and sometimes the armpits.
Not washing with shampoo often enough
If you don’t wash your hair regularly, the oil and skin cells on your scalp can build up, producing dandruff.
A yeast-type fungus (malassezia).
Sensitivity to hair care products (contact dermatitis)
In general, daily washing with a mild shampoo to reduce oiliness and skin cell buildup can often help with mild dandruff.
Dandruff shampoos are classified according to the medication they contain:
Shampoos with zinc pyrithione. These contain zinc pyrithione, an antibiotic and antifungal agent.
Shampoos based on tar derivatives. Mineral tar, a by-product of the coal manufacturing process, is effective in treating conditions such as dandruff, seborrheic dermatitis, and psoriasis.
Shampoos containing salicylic acid. These “scalp exfoliants” help to remove scales.
Shampoos containing selenium sulfide. These shampoos slow skin cell death and may also reduce malassezia
Shampoos with ketoconazole.
Although more studies need to be done, some have found that tea tree oil can reduce dandruff.
Tea tree oil, which comes from the leaves of the Australian tea tree (Melaleuca alternifolia), has been used for centuries as an antiseptic, antibiotic, and antifungal agent. It is now included in several shampoos that can be found in health food stores. The oil can cause allergic reactions in some people.
Vitamin B: It is needed to produce hemoglobin in the blood, which is essential to get oxygen from the lungs to the body tissues, including hair.
Vitamin B6: Its deficiency is one of the main causes of baldness. It also intervenes in the production of keratin, which gives the hair shine.
Vitamin B12: Its lack can cause dryness of the hair, the appearance of grey hair or a more abundant fall.
Vitamin E: Tonifies the scalp and helps the absorption of oxygen, increasing hair renewal and growth.