Many people have experienced dandruff at least once in their lives. Here’s how to tell if you have it and how to prevent it.
WHY IS MY SCALP ITCHY AND FLAKY?
An itchy scalp is a common symptom of dandruff. Itch can appear before flakes, as an early sign that your scalp has been exposed to dandruff-causing irritants.
Dandruff may first occur when the body’s hormones fluctuate – most commonly during puberty or middle age.
The natural response is to scratch but try to avoid the temptation as it can cause inflammation and damage the skin.
WHAT IS DANDRUFF?
Dandruff is most commonly associated with flakes - small white or yellow flakes of skin that form on the scalp when skin cells replicate too quickly.
These ‘extra’ skin cells clump together on the surface of your scalp as visible flakes. But it can also present itself with symptoms like dryness and itch.
But it can also present itself with symptoms like dryness and itch.
Whatever the symptom, it’s all begins with irritation, and a microbe called Malassezia globosa which is present on everybody’s scalp.
Around 50% of people are sensitive to Malassezia – a substance it produces called oleic acid – and that causes the irritation and itching which is associated with a dandruff flare-up.
WHY DOES IT CAUSE ITCHING?
Itching is a common response to any kind of irritation – and dandruff is no different.
Your body responds by trying to shed the irritant, triggering neural pathways that cause you to scratch as well as triggering your skin cells to reproduce & replace the damaged cells.
HOW TO TREAT AN ITCHY SCALP
The first rule when treating an itchy scalp is not to scratch. Avoid the temptation entirely – the mechanical damage from your fingernails can do more harm to your skin cells, not to mention your hair.
Instead, choose a shampoo that gives you an instant cooling sensation to calm itch. Then, help stop itch from coming back.by fighting the root cause of the itch – typically dandruff.
More about the cause of dandruff