Dandruff

Definition:
A person's entire body surface continuously sheds dead skin cells. The skin itself sheds every twenty-four days. Dandruff, the shedding of dead skin cells from the scalp at an excessive rate, is the result of the normal growing process of the skin cells of the scalp.

Dandruff Causes:

Dandruff is seasonal. It is most severe during the winter and mildest during the summer.

The most common symptom of dandruff is scaling; itching is occasionally present.

Dandruff scales usually occur as small, round, white-to-gray patches on the top of the head; however, scaling can occur anywhere on the scalp.

The following factors may make the flaking of dandruff worse:

  • Excessive use of hairsprays and gels.
  • Improper use of hair-coloring products or excessive use of electric hair curlers
  • Cold weather and dry indoor heating.
  • Tight fitting hats and scarves.
  • Infrequent shampooing of the hair or inadequate rinsing.
  • Stress, anxiety and tension.
  • Dandruff Treatment:

    Since dandruff is a natural process, it can not be eliminated; it can only be controlled.

    Mild dandruff treatment may be controlled by regularly shampooing the scalp with a mild, non-medicated shampoo. If frequent shampooing alone does not control the dandruff, a medicated dandruff shampoo can be used.

    The most direct way to control dandruff is to use a shampoo that contains a cytostatic agent, such as selenium sulfide or zinc pyrithione. Cytostatic agents reduce the rate of growth and multiplication of horny cells (top layer of skin on the scalp), which caused a noticeable decrease in visible dandruff within several weeks. Shampoos containing selenium sulfide should not be used if there is a cut or abrasion on the scalp.

    Tar shampoos such as Tarsum will help to control dandruff.

    When scaling of the scalp is accompanied by redness and greasy scaling on the face, eyebrows and eyelashes, a person may have something other than dandruff. You should contact your dermatologist if the redness is present, or if scaling occurs on parts of the body other than the scalp.



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