Dry Itchy Scalp and Dandruff Treatment, Causes, Remedy

by Mouli Chakraborty
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Are you upset because you have dry skin, especially a dry scalp? Do you have to tolerate a lot of dandruff in your hair even after shampooing? Well! Let me make you aware that you are not the only one who is suffering from these problems of dry scalp & dandruff. It’s a very common issue about which many people complain every day. They even think that dry scalp & dandruff are the same & both can be treated with the same remedies. 

But, Guys! Do you know dry scalp & dandruff are not similar things & so their treatment procedures are also different? Dandruff occurs from the dry scalp but is not the same as flaky scalp. Now feeling interested to learn the causes & cures of both, right? Okay, let us give you an account of everything about these two conditions. Understand the distinction between dandruff & dry scalp. Just follow on:

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What Actually Dry Scalp Is?

Sometimes, some people’s scalp doesn’t comprise adequate oil. So, their scalp’s skin doesn’t feel lubricated. And this results in a dry scalps. Just like other sorts of dry skin conditions, it is a condition where you will feel itching, flaking, discomfort, or irritation. Also, your hair will look dry.

The reason behind it is that the oil produced from our scalp conditions our hair & it will not happen if you are undergoing a flaky scalp problem. If you have dry skin, you are more inclined to develop this condition. 

Yes, indeed, dandruff may also cause your scalp to flake & these flakes are noticeable on your garments & hair. However, in contrast to that, a flaky scalp arises only when your scalp is not producing enough moisture. So, what causes dry scalp?

The causes of dry skin are also the causes of your dry scalps. And they are dry air, especially that blew in the wintertime, excessive washing of the area & other skin problems like eczema. 

What Actually Dandruff Is?

We know that our skin sheds away its dead cells. And the same thing happens with our scalp. Our scalp also contains various dead skin cells that are gradually shed away from it. When many such dead cells form on our scalp within a short period, they turn into dandruff. So, dandruff flakes are nothing but dead skin cells. 

Though as per AAD’s (American Academy of Dermatology’s) statement, the researchers could not find the actual cause of dandruff till now. Still, they believe that the causes of one’s dandruff may be fungal infections on his scalp, oil secretion by his scalp, or his sensitivity to some hair products. And, if the reason is all the three things in combination, he must face the worst dandruff problems.  

In most of our scalps, do you know that a fungus named Malassezia exists silently without causing any problem? However, the same fungus, if developed in the scalp of persons suffering from the problem of dandruff, causes irritation, discomfort & flakes.

The fungus’s interaction with other factors actually causes this irritation. Besides, the researchers also did a study in 2016, which confirms that there’s an intimate connection between the existence of scalp-residing bacteria & dandruff. 

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Dandruff Vs Dry Scalp:

Dandruff Vs Dry Scalp
Dandruff Vs Dry Scalp

It is problematic to sort out the exact differences between dandruff and dry itchy scalp. At least, most people think so. And it is also possible that you are suffering from both dandruff and dry scalp. However, there are some differences between the two:

  • In the case of dandruff, you will feel the scalp more oily than when you have a dry scalp.
  • If your actual problem is dandruff, you will feel intense scalp itching without the scalp feeling dry. But, this won’t happen in the case of dry scalp as in the case of dry scalp, though you will experience itching, the itching will be due to the dryness of your scalp.
  • If your hair contains dandruff, it will look greasy, which is not the case with the problem of dry scalp. 

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Should You Consult A Doctor For Dandruff or Dry Scalp?

Both the problems of dandruff & dry scalp are manageable at home. You can treat these conditions with the help of some effective home remedies. But, what if the problem is something else other than these two, say Scalp psoriasis or Seborrheic dermatitis? Scalp psoriasis also causes redness, itching & flakes like these two conditions & is an autoimmune disorder. 

And, Seborrheic dermatitis is also a form of dandruff that results in intense & painful inflammation. Consider visiting a doctor in case you are having a flaky scalp & feeling other symptoms of redness & sores. Also, visit the doctor if the home treatments fail to work & you are experiencing open wounds over your head & face.   

Suppose you are suffering from an autoimmune disorder or any other chronic illness. In that case, you should speak to the doctor about these ailments before asking for an effective dry scalp or dandruff treatment. Dandruff or flaky scalp resembling symptoms may be the result of another condition. And, you know, a vulnerable immune system usually makes the condition of your scalp worse, more quickly. 

But, how to get rid of dry scalp? And is there any dry scalp remedy available? Also, how to treat dandruff? Well! Yes, such remedies do exist. 

Dry Scalp Treatment & Dandruff Treatment:

In the majority of cases, dandruff is easily treatable at home. Various anti-dandruff shampoos, medicated and non-medicated, are being sold in the market & these shampoos are enough for treating dandruff by removing it from your scalp. 

They also treat the underlying reasons for dandruff, such as small fungal infections. Many anti-dandruff shampoos comprise pyrithione, which is very effective in treating dandruff. Coar tar shampoo is also a good option, but blonde & gray hair people usually avoid it because of its hair color changing nature, particularly the light hair. 

Also, some people dislike dandruff-treating shampoos because of their strong smell. So, in case you wish for a not bad-smelling dandruff-treating shampoo, you may try using tea tree oil anti-dandruff shampoo.

Shampoo for Dry Scalp

As for flaky scalp, you may also use anti-dandruff shampoos or shampoo for dry scalp on your head. This is because most of the anti-dandruff shampoos available in the market contain medicines that have the power to slay the fungus residing on your scalp & eliminate the flaky skin from your scalp. Some good shampoos for dry itchy scalp include Pyrithione Zinc antifungal shampoo, Selenium Sulfide Shampoo, Ketoconazole shampoo, Salicyclic acid shampoo & Coal Tar shampoo.

Other Treatment

But, how to detect whether you are facing the issue of flaky scalp or dandruff? Well! For that, wash your hair & scalp using a gentle shampoo. After that, use any moisturizing conditioner on your hair. Do this before you go to bed. In case you have a flaky scalp, you will see that your flakes have disappeared immediately after your shower the next morning. 

Other than these, certain home remedies also help treat dry scalp in people. These include massaging with coconut oil, tea tree oil, aloe vera, apple cider vinegar, which hazel, baking soda with olive oil (mixed at equal quantity) on your hair & scalp. These home remedies are well known for treating dry scalp. 

How To Prevent Dry Scalp & Dandruff?

how to get rid of dry scalp
How to get rid of dry scalp
  • Regularly wash your hair using an anti-dandruff shampoo. Also, make sure that all the shampoos have been rinsed out from your hair.
  • Don’t use hair products comprising harsh chemicals such as bleach, alcohol, etc., or those which are oily. This is because the harsh chemical ingredients of the shampoo may further dry up your scalp & the oily products build up too much oil on your scalp, which will increase dandruff even more. 
  • Go out & take a sunbath for a few minutes every day & warm up yourself. Evidence indicates that the UV rays that the sun emits control dandruff. But, remember, too much exposure to the sun is dangerous as it may lead to skin cancer. 
  • Don’t take the stress. Manage it with yoga, medication, exercises, deep breathing, pranayama, or other relaxation methods. 

The Takeaway

So, if you are suffering from the problem of dry scalp or dandruff, don’t take any stress anymore. Just follow the above suggestions or take the help of a doctor. And, you will see your problem will vanish away within no time.

FAQs—

Q.1. How do you treat dry scalp?

Answer: 
1. Use anti-dandruff shampoos on your scalp. Some good shampoos for dry itchy scalp include Pyrithione Zinc antifungal shampoo, Selenium Sulfide Shampoo, Ketoconazole shampoo, Salicyclic acid shampoo & Coal Tar shampoo.
2. Wash your hair & scalp using a gentle shampoo. After that, use any moisturizing conditioner on your hair. Do this before you go to bed. In case you have a flaky scalp, you will see that your flakes have disappeared immediately after your shower the next morning. 
3. Visit a hairstylist. The hairstylist conducts a scalp treatment on their hair using steam. This treatment produces more moisture in their scalp. 
4. Apply any of these home remedies – massaging with coconut oil, tea tree oil, aloe vera, apple cider vinegar. These home remedies are well known for treating flaky scalp. 

Q.2. How do you moisturize your scalp?

Answer: Moisturize your scalp with any of these- moisturizing shampoo, post-shower hair tonic, jojoba or tea tree essential oils, witch hazel or apple cider vinegar, exfoliating scalp masks, coconut oil, aloe vera gel, or products containing aloe vera.

Q.3. What does dry scalp indicate?

Answer: Sometimes, some people’s scalp doesn’t contain sufficient oil. So, the skin of their scalp doesn’t feel lubricated. And this results in a flaky scalp. Just like other sorts of dry skin conditions, it is a condition where you will feel itching, flaking, or irritation. Also, your hair may appear dry. 

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