The common skin condition known as seborrheic dermatitis primarily affects your scalp. It results in skin irritation, flaky dandruff, an itchy scalp, and scaly spots.
Itchy scalp is actually irritating, as you can’t stop scratching your head. Seborrheic dermatitis is a chronic disorder that manifests, clears up with treatment, and flares up occasionally.
The face, sides of the nose, brows, ears, eyelids, and chest are common oily body areas that are affected. Although it does not cause permanent hair loss and is not communicable, this condition can be unpleasant.
Its presence does not indicate dirty or diseased skin. Seborrheic dermatitis could also go away on its own. But if it goes out of control, medication is a good way to manage an itchy scalp.
If you want to get rid of the symptoms and stop flare-ups, you might need to use medicated shampoo or other items over time. It is also unclear what causes seborrheic dermatitis. It might be brought on by the Malassezia yeast, too much sebum in the skin, or an immune system issue.
In addition to being known as dandruff, seborrheic eczema, and seborrheic psoriasis, seborrheic dermatitis is also known as “cradle cap” when it affects infants.
Who is at risk for seborrheic dermatitis?
The prevalence of seborrheic dermatitis is about 11%. Infants under three months old and adults in their 30s to 60s are the most common age groups to experience it. It affects men more than women, and Caucasians are more affected than African Americans.
You are more prone to getting this type of dermatitis if you were born with naturally oily skin. And you also become more susceptible if your family has a history of psoriasis. Living in a dry, cold climate does not cause seborrheic dermatitis, but it does make the condition worse.
Signs and symptoms of Itchy scalp or seborrheic dermatitis might include:
- Dandruff or flaking skin on your eyebrows, beard, moustache, hair, or itchy scalp.
- Oily skin patches that are coated in flaky white or yellow scales or crust can appear everywhere, including on the chest, armpits, groin, eyebrows, ears, eyelids, and under the breasts.
- Rash that is redder or darker in people with white skin than in people with brown or black skin
- Annular (ring-shaped) rash for petaloid seborrheic dermatitis
- Itchiness (pruritus) (pruritus)
Seborrheic dermatitis symptoms and indicators frequently worsen in response to stress, exhaustion, or seasonal changes.
Rusty yellow scales cover the heads of babies (cradle cap). Although cradle cap should not itch, rubbing the area can aggravate the condition and damage the skin, which can result in bleeding or minor infections.
Why does seborrheic dermatitis occur? What makes it worse?
According to researchers, the precise cause of seborrheic dermatitis is unknown. They believe there could be numerous factors.
- Malassezia is a form of yeast that is found on everyone’s skin but can overgrow in some people.
- Increased androgen production (a hormone).
- A rise in skin lipid content.
- An inflammatory reaction.
- family background (dermatitis runs in the family).
Seborrheic dermatitis risk factors include:
- Climate that is cold and dry.
- Unclean skin.
- Applying lotions containing alcohol.
- Acne, psoriasis, and rosacea have all been present in the past.
Does itchy scalp get worse with the weather?
Your seborrheic dermatitis will worsen in the winter due to the dry air. In the summer, the dermatitis is manageable. It has been demonstrated that the type of yeast that overgrows on the skin of sufferers of seborrheic dermatitis is killed by UV-A and UV-B rays from the sun. Just be mindful about sun damage!
When to visit a doctor
Consult a medical professional if:
If you are unable to sleep, have an extremely itchy scalp, or can’t focus on your everyday activities because of how uncomfortable you feel.
- You feel anxious or ashamed about your condition.
- You suspect an infection on your skin.
- Although you have attempted self-care techniques, your symptoms continue.
- You keep scratching your head.
Seborrheic dermatitis is itchy and irritating, but it has no negative effects on your health. Treatment is an option for controlling the condition. You should not have to go through your day with itchy scalp and white flakes on your black clothing!