What is dandruff?
It is a typical medical condition wherein your scalp is itchy and it comes out as white flakes. The more severe form of it is called as seborrheic dermatitis, which involves inflammation as well. It affects both the genders but is more commonly seen in males. Dandruff is usually seen in adults, not in children.
What causes dandruff?
With all the hair problems a most common asked question is how to get rid of dandruff? But before that, we should need to know what causes dandruff?
Dandruff occurs because of overgrowth of skin cell. Let us discuss in detail about the causes of dandruff which will be helpful in getting a solution to the question how to get rid of dandruff fast?
Propionibacterium and Staphylococcus bacteria along with the sebum and water forms the dandruff
Since olden days it is found that species of Malassezia fungus is the culprit behind dandruff. The fungus metabolizes triglycerides of sebum to oleic acid, which penetrates the scalp skin and initiates inflammatory action. This results in disruption of homeostasis and breakdown of stratum corneum cells
Other causes of dandruff
Dry skin, lack of hygiene (no proper cleaning of the scalp to remove the normal dead skin cells), over shampooing. It can also be due to over secretion of sebaceous glands, allergic sensitivity due to products applied on the scalp.
which can be differentiated as thick silvery scaled lesions on the scalp with redness, pain and swelling.
These dandruff flakes are of different types based on the nature of cause
- Dry Skin Dandruff: This is due to dryness of skin
- Oily Dandruff: This is due to over secretion of sebaceous glands
- Fungal Dandruff: due to infection of Malassezia
- Disease Related Dandruff: Seborrhoeic dermatitis, psoriasis, eczema
One can aim to the question how to cure dandruff? by identifying the cause and selecting appropriate medicine to get rid of it.
How to get rid of dandruff with some simple home remedies?
Before the invention of modern science, our grannies recipes use to be our lifesavers, here are some of the age-old treatments to get rid of dandruff
- One teaspoon of freshly extracted lemon juice after washing the hair can benefit you
- A combination of fuller’s earth (clay) and lemon applied once in a week will also be a good option
- Curd is also a useful remedy to preventing or treating dandruff, a good massage with curd can help you to get rid of dandruff.
- Apple cider vinegar seems to have been very efficient and prompt cleaner of dandruff, mix equal volumes of apple cider vinegar and water and apply and massage gently before last wash of hair.
- Another home remedy is fenugreek seeds. The fenugreek seeds are washed and soaked in water for about 12 hours. The soaked seeds are then ground to a fine paste. Apply the paste to the scalp and leave it for 30 mins. Let the paste get dried, once dried wash the scalp thoroughly with soap or just normal water. Fenugreek seeds are good not only for scalp but also for hair health.
How to treat dandruff?
There are several topically applied medicines for the treatment of dandruff, to name a few
Ketoconazole is an antifungal medication, useful in fighting against dandruff due to fungus. Nizoral shampoo which is the most commonly prescribed product is based on ketoconazole. It is an azole group of an antifungal agent which interferes with the formation of a cell membrane and also some fungal enzymes which result in cell death.
Selsum blue shampoo is composed of selenium sulfide. This ingredient seems to be effective against the fungus Malassezia, inhibiting its growth, thus preventing dandruff formation. It is also found that selenium sulfide prevents shedding of skin cells. It can cause discoloration of dyed hairs, so it is always advisable to use as directed and seek medical advice incase of any medical problem.
It is used as a scrubber of the scalp which washes away the flakes from the scalp. Neutrogena T/Sal is composed of Salicylic acid. The main disadvantage of salicylic acid is it can cause dryness. This can be overcome by using a conditioner after washing with this anti-dandruff shampoo.
The commonly used over the counter Head & Shoulders is composed of Jason Dandruff Relief 2 in 1. Zinc pyrithione has antimicrobial properties; it effectively fights against bacteria and fungus of the scalp. It is used as an effective antifungal which can prevent and treat dandruff and also seborrheic dermatitis.
The coal tar based shampoos have been found to be effective in treating various skin conditions such as psoriasis, dandruff and seborrheic dermatitis. It prevents shedding of scalp cells, as there is no shedding of skin, there will be no flakes. Again this type of shampoo comes with the disadvantage of discoloration. If you have recently colored your hairs, avoid the use of this product. Neutrogena T/Gel is composed of coal tar.
How to remove dandruff? Or How to reduce dandruff?
There are a number of shampoos available in the market. Washing with these shampoos removes dandruff from the scalp and also prevents further dandruff formation
Nizoral anti-dandruff shampoo
This shampoo is composed of antifungal medicine ketoconazole which fightbacks the growth and development of fungus on the scalp. This shampoo prevents and cures dandruff. It is especially useful in cases where there is excessive secretion of sebaceous glands and the skin is oily because of it.Nizoral anti-dandruff shampoo is the most commonly prescribed and is the first choice of many doctors.
Head & Shoulders Dandruff Shampoo citrus breeze
there are different variants of Head & Shoulders Dandruff Shampoo citrus breeze, green apple, classic clean, ocean lift, deep clean. It comes as shampoo or 2 in 1 shampoo plus conditioner. The variant citrus breeze is a shampoo which offers the following benefits
- Prevents itching
- Prevents drying and irritation
- Prevents flaking of scalp
- It comes in fresh citrus breeze
This shampoo is gentle on hairs and gives hair a beautiful look after washing. The shampoo is pH balanced formula which prevents drying of skin. It is suitable for all times of hairs including colored hairs. It can give 100% flake free results.
Neutrogena T/Gel Daily Control 2-In-1 Dandruff Shampoo Plus Conditioner:
This 1% pyrithione zinc acts as an antimicrobial shampoo and prevents itching of scalp and flaking. This 2-in-1 shampoo plus conditioner gives hair a smooth and good look. This shampoo doesn’t cause discoloration of hair; it doesn’t cause drying of hair.
Selsun Blue Medicated Dandruff Shampoo/Conditioner 2-in-1 Treatment
It is composed of 1% Selenium Sulfide as the active ingredients. The shampoo performs dual work of cleaning and conditioning. It is a doctor recommended shampoo which provides healthy hair and scalp.
How to prevent dandruff?
Dandruff can be due to many reasons but by following a few simple things can help you to prevent dandruff and also the answer for the question how to control dandruff?
Like in any disease condition, stress can worsen dandruff. Relieve yourself from stress it is good for your overall wellbeing.
Oily scalp needs a regular wash. Use plenty of water after shampooing to remove dandruff and oil.
Exposure to sunlight
Little exposure to sunlight not only gives you healthy bones and immune health. It is also beneficial in avoiding fungal infections.
It is always advisable to maintain the hygiene of scalp. Overuse of shampoo and other products may result in drying of skin and hence flaking causing dandruff. The scalp cells should undergo a natural process of renewal i.e. once in a month. In people with dandruff, the cells shed-down more frequently. As with dry skin, oily skin is also responsible for dandruff. The over secretion of sebaceous glands produce thick oily flakes causing dandruff. Keep your scalp neat and clean it, will avoid fungal and bacterial infections. Shedding of scalp also results in hair fall. Follow simple formula of hygiene and health, you will get a dandruff-free scalp.