DermTV – How to Soothe and Repair an Itchy and Flaky Scalp [DermTV.Com Epi #026]

DermTV – How to Soothe and Repair an Itchy and Flaky Scalp [DermTV.Com Epi #026]

Hello, I’m Dr. Neal Schultz [pause] and welcome to DermTV. How do you fix a dry, flaky, itchy scalp?
Very simply, just shampoo it. What do flakes represent, whether they’re
on your face or on your scalp? Flakes represent large clumps of dead cells.
Normally, as your skin matures, and the dead cells fall off, they
fall off in very tiny, microscopic cells. You can’t see them. But
when they come off prematurely, before they have a chance to separate one
from the other, then they come off in clumps, and these clumps are recognized
as flakes. And flaking is actually usually caused by inflammation, not
by dryness, so what does flaking from the scalp represent? It’s actually
dandruff, and dandruff is the result of inflammation from excess oil.
The excess oil on the bottom of the scalp causes inflammation and that results
in a little bit of redness, a little bit of swelling, and actually the
skin is then shed prematurely in these flakes. How do we control this inflammation
and the oil imbalance? Very simply, by shampooing. Start with your
regular shampoo. Shampoo every day. Lather up for a minute, rinse it out.
Lather up for another minute. And don’t be concerned that you’re going
to cause dryness in your scalp because the flaking that you see, it’s not
dryness, it’s really inflammation. If your regular shampoo doesn’t
do the trick after about two weeks, then try a medicated shampoo. There
are many over-the-counter medicated shampoos that work. They are aesthetically
elegant. They often contain either tar, salicylic acid, selenium
or zinc. Again, give them two weeks and, if that doesn’t solve your problem
of dry, flaking or itching in your scalp, it’s time to see your dermatologist
who will prescribe topical medications to control your problem.

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53 Replies to “DermTV – How to Soothe and Repair an Itchy and Flaky Scalp [DermTV.Com Epi #026]”

  1. 7 years ago or so a doctor advised me to use T/gel 1-2 times a week,Fungoral 1 time a week and something like Head and Shoulders other days. It cured the red sometimes hard and itchy scalp but the flakes increased like crazy. Then after less than a year I changed to only Head and Shoulders and it worked miracle. Only now and then tiny flakes and red scalp at the forehead. But now(been -4°C but not colder than other winters) the last month everything is coming back.

  2. And I have just been using Head and Shoulders all these last 6 years for like 5 times a week. What method has worked for you ? Thanks. And also styling gel,wax and sprays just seem to cause itchy scalp if I don't rinse it off after before I go to sleep(like I want to do that coming home from partying late in the morning).

  3. This definitely doesn't work for most black people. I'm black also. I have seborrheic dermatitis (on face, ears, scalp) and found the best thing for it is sulfur. Try a sulfur shampoo like Sebulex. I make my own 10% sulfur shampoo and lotion. I was my hair 1-2 times a week. It has worked better than any prescribed medicine's I've used and I've had this condition for over 20 years. Good Luck. 🙂

  4. @navylaks2: If you are referring to Psoriasis and Seborrheic Dermatitis, then the treatment may be the same depending upon the severity of each condition.

  5. Hey Dr iv been itching all over lately even my head i dont have lice or any thing in my room or bed but i get these bites on my neck and then i start to itch all over crazy is that a sign of anything? Mambey stress?

  6. @bbnne1–I would then get a good conditioner, but don't put it on the scalp, just the hair away from the scalp, esp. toward the ends. When you go to condition, leave it on for 2 or 3 min. before rinsing it off. I have heard this in several places, and it seems to work for me.

  7. I've had really serious scalp flakes for years. I would control it by scraping them off before I got in the shower. This became routine for years. February of this year I hurt my lower back while playing football. I didn't have insurance, but I knew I had to do something about it. I bought an INVERSION TABLE at the local sporting goods store for $100 bucks. Not only did it help my back pain, but it unintentionally cured my scalp issues. Try it.

  8. THeres so many different ways ive seen to cure it! what should i do! im a dude and i usually have long hair and i got it cut at the beginning of the school year. i use this styling wax to spike it and now that its almost winter ive notice that its becoming itchy and i have some flakes but not many. i know it not dandruff but i want to know the BEST way to get rid of it. i also dont know if its cause of winter, not cleaning the wax out all the way or too much shampoo. ive been using lukewarm

  9. water now and Aussie shampoo but im gonna stop that cause i read the ingredients. i honestly dont know what to do and i really need help. thanks

  10. i used Selsun Blue "Normal to oily" (turquoise cap), and it smells HORRIBLE!! Although, I was determined to get rid of my dandruff so I used it for 4 months, in the beginning using it every time I washed my hair (which was every day or every other day) then gradually using it every other shampoo. Now my scalp is pretty much dandruff free, but the stench of the Selsun Blue still lurks in my hair even though I haven't used it for a couple of weeks now. What can i do to get rid of it? Any products?

  11. hi im a 15 y/o girl and i think i may have dandruff. my hair is very VERY itchy but its ONLY at my hairline then as a result of frustrated itching becomes red and WHITE flakes fall but der not oily.i also noticed as you briefly mentioned, i also have it on my EYEBROWS and NOSE (which i thought was only dry skin but obv not?) what is this then?? im using t-gel by nurtrogena but no major results. please PLEASE please explaine as best you can what i have and what i should do about it 🙂

  12. @missanim3luv3r
    Use Selsun Blue. for 2 weeks, everyday. and really scrub. it should start going away. I use to do it and it started going away then i got lazy -___-'

  13. i am a 44 y.o. african american woman, who can't b washing my hair every day. i do not have the time.not to mention the fact that i do not have long flowing beautiful hair that can just wash and go. i need alot of styling products, flat irons, blow dryers etc. and so the most i could do is maybe twice a week. so how can i treat my scalp?

  14. I have tried so many shampoos and visited several dermatologists. NOTHING has stopped my dandruff. I don't shampoo everyday, though, but every other day. If I shampoo everyday, the ends of my hair are going to look horrible.
    Tea tree shampoo does any good to dandruff? I just started using one I bought at wholefoods.

  15. @mofohofo grease is torture to my scalp! It has mineral oil and petrolatum that will clog my scalp and make it worse. So grease doesnt work for me.

  16. That is untrue. Water is the staff of life and necessary for afro textured hair (or any hair) to thrive and retain moisture. Cleaning your scalp often whether with shampoo, ayurvedic powders, rinses or conditioners is crucial to proper scalp health and hair growth. How often you clean your scalp and hair is dependent on the products you use and your lifestyle (maybe you're an athlete who sweats a lot & need to wash your hair often), not what texture your hair is.

  17. i wash my hair daily, and i scrub my scalp with my fingers so as to remove the dandruff. it stops itching for a while after i shampoo it, but it started again after 1/2 hr. what can i do. pls help….!! its been tormenting me for quite some time now… thanks..

  18. Why do ppl keep saying what do i do? He said if this doesn't help see a doctor.. thas all he can do……..unless u want him to come to your house. ~_O

  19. btw my hair is dryish my scalp is not oily at all … i washed it last on wednesday and now saturday it's dry flaky.

  20. What if your scalp is itchy but there's no flakes or anything? It's been a week and I'm tired of the itchiness!! 🙁

  21. But I don't know what shampoo I wanna use. There's too many and especially new ones with cones in them which just coat the scalp and clog the pores. Any recommendations?

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