Are you one of the many women who experience an itchy scalp after working out? The cause of the itchiness varies but you should not worry about it as it is common, normal and natural.
It is, however, annoying when you have to scratch your freshly-braided or retouched hair. The itch is sometimes so intense that you end up with sores on your scalp.
What causes the itch?
When you exercise, your scalp sweats, just like any other part of your body only that the scalp sweats more than most parts of the body. When you sweat, the pores open up and let out oil, salt, fat and water — the sweat. The more you work out, the more you sweat. The sweat reacts with the natural bacteria on your scalp, leading to the itch.
The itchiness develops during the workout, but affects you after the session when the scalp dries a bit and the sweat settles down with the bacteria, fat, salt and oils.
In a typical situation, one sweats during a workout and has a shower afterwards but the scalp is hardly washed. The constant scratching eventually causes thinning and breakage of hair from the roots.
There are ways in which you can relieve the itch.
• To alleviate the itch and avoid scratching, use lightweight products with antiseptic and/or clarifying properties.
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• You could also wipe the sweat as much as you can the moment the scalp starts itching. Use a soft towel to soak in as much sweat as possible, working especially on the roots in a gentle way. It may not give total relief but the sensation will be bearable.
• Exercise-induced scalp sweating can also occur if you eat certain foods and your immune system responds negatively. Get the problem diagnosed.
• Always ensure your scalp is clean and free of bacteria. Regular moisturizing is important. Wash your scalp regularly with an appropriate shampoo. An anti-bacterial shampoo or conditioner will be great for cleansing the scalp and unblocking the pores.
• Tea tree oil has anti-bacterial, anti-fungal, antimicrobial and anti-inflammatory properties. Mix it with your regular hair oil and apply on the scalp. You will notice a slight tingling and refreshed feeling minutes after applying. Wash your hands after handling tea tree oil.
• Lemon juice contains antiseptic properties and can be used on the scalp to kill bacteria and treat itchy scalp. Add a few drops of fresh juice to your hair oil and apply on the scalp using a cotton ball.