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Suffer dandruff problem. Have itching and feels painful. How to get rid of this?

Dec 2013
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Practicing since : 2002
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Hello. I have dandruff problem in the form of flakes. Sometimes it is very irritating on my head so I keep on scratching on my head to get relief. And whenever I have bald pate, my head looks very worse with dandruff and will be very painful. I tried using many shampoos and couldn't make any difference. How can I get rid of this.
Posted Sun, 11 Aug 2013 in Skin Hair and Nails
Answered by Dr. Sanjay Kumar Kanodia 56 minutes later

Welcome and thanks for posting your query to XXXXXXX

I can understand your concern for the dandruff problem in yourself.

Before I proceed any further you should understand the basic important facts regarding dandruff.

Scientifically and medically our skin is a multiple layered structure. Our skin gets renewed every day. The layer which is present on the top today will be fallen off tomorrow. It will not be present tomorrow and would be dead skin in form of scales. This process is not actually visible on normally. So we can say we are just one day old from our skin most superficially.

Now in some persons it is renewed at a faster pace. Because of hygiene and scalp hair this dead skin in form of scales gets entangled and trapped in form of visible of scales known as dandruff. It varies from person to person and also on other of factors which makes the difference inter-individually.

Coming on to your problem which is scientifically known as “pityriasis capitis” is highest in twenties and then recedes by itself in later part of life. It is due to the fact that the renewal of skin and the fatty acid secretion in scalp is highest at this part of life. So there is a tendency to grow fungus as well which makes the flaking more perceptible. There are no such important predisposing factors except for few which can make the situation worsened such as individual's own tendency to renew the skin, application of hair oil and environmental factors.

We can not change our own tendency to renew the skin but the personal measures of hygiene as well as the environmental factors can be modified.

For the remedy part follow the things below:

1.Wash your scalp daily. You will say you are already doing it. But my way of application is- it is to be done twice in a single bath. It means when you are washing your scalp apply first time shampoo for washing the hair part only, then rinse it off immediately with water. Reapply the shampoo again immediately, leave it for around 5 minutes, do a good gentle massage by your fingers for around 2 minutes and then wash it off. By doing so for around 7 days you will get good benefit.

2.The other way if you can not do two time wash is apply your shampoo (diluted with water) for around half an hour before bath like an hair oil. And then rest of the second application and bath as told above. You can reduce the frequency of twice application after 2 weeks and then can optimize it according to your own need.

3. If you are not getting any better then can also do it two times in day for time being- yes you read it properly two times per day. It is same like how many times you generally brush your teeth- you say one time, but those who have some problem with teeth do brushing twice also. In the same manner to reduce the flaking - the latest dermatological view is you can gently wash your hair two times (the same thing I can not say to a female with long hair and I suppose you also don’t have long hair).

4.Stick to one good shampoo which is suiting your hair, don’t change the shampoos frequently. If you are using any conditioner also then to be used over the strands of hair only and not over the scalp skin.

5.Do not use any kind of hair oil or any oily or creamy stuff any time on your scalp. With due respect to your mom, I would like to tell you that God has given us adequate of oil glands to nourish our hair. People do have a myth that applying hair oil makes hair good- but we dermatologists totally disagree with that. On one side there is no direct or indirect benefit of hair oil, on the other side it actually attract more of dirt and grease over the scalp leading to more proliferation of fungus and thence to more dandruff. People do say that this nourishes your hair- but hair nourishment is never provided by oil but by the best of proteins and mineral with vitamin diet.

5.Comb your hair at least 3-4 times a day and most importantly at night time so that the dust particle and other of dead skin is taken off.

6.Eat a lot of good healthy diet, do mild exercises, reduce your work stress as all these have bit impact on skin so also on scalp skin.

7.Finally if you are not getting relief from all these measures done judiciously and prudently then can apply and take certain antifungals and keratolytics (medicines reduce and removing excess scaling) under dermatological advice.

Hope I have answered your query. If you have any further questions, I will be happy to help.

Wish you good health.


Dr Sanjay Kumar Kanodia
(MD- Dermatology & STD)
Above answer was peer-reviewed by
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