Why you have an itchy scratchy scalp

By Pauline Muindi | Sunday, Aug 26th 2018 at 00:00
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Nothing is as irritating as having an itchy scalp. While it sounds like a fairly minor issue, an itchy head can lead to sleeplessness and headaches. 

Raking your hands through your hair, bumping at your scalp with your palms might bring a bit of relief. However without knowing the cause of the itchiness in the first place, these solutions are only temporary. 

These are the most common of itchy scalp and how to treat them:


1. Hair dye
Do you love experimenting with coloured manes? This might be a culprit for your itchy scalp, especially if younotice the itching after colouring your hair. An allergic reaction to chemicals used in most dyes can irritate and burn your scalp and make it itchy. 
The good news, however, is that itchiness caused by hair dye will ease off in a few days. 
Tip: Go for dyes with milder ingredients next time youwant to colour your hair. You can even opt for henna, which naturally dyes your hair and strengthens it.

2. Dandruff
For most people, itchiness is caused by build-up of dead skin cells on the scalp. One of the most common causes of dandruff is an overreaction to yeast commonly found on skin, which leads to an overproduction or skin cells and oil in the scalp.
Other causes of dandruff are illness and dermatological conditions such as psoriasis and eczema. Factors such as stress, poor diet, certain hair products, and even aging while not being the root causes of dandruff can also acerbate the problem.
Tip: You can ditch dandruff by using special dandruff shampoos, applying an aspirin mask to your hair, and applying tea tree oil, among other solutions.

3. Eczema
Eczema, a skin condition that causes red, inflamed, and itchy patches can also affect your scalp. The type of eczema which affects scalp is known as sebhorreic eczema. In mild cases, the eczema will go away by its own. You just have to keep your fingers from scratching your scalp and wait it out. 
Tip: Cleanse your hair with a gentle shampoo and apply a good, natural oil such as coconut, Argan or almond oil. If the problem persists, consult a dermatologist.

4. Psoriasis
Like eczema, psoriasis is a skin condition that can also affect your scalp. Psoriasis causes red, dry and itchypatches on skin. Experts say that psoriasis is an autoimmune disease which causes cells to build-up too rapidly on the surface skin. The extra cells form scales and red patches that can be itchy and painful. 
Psoriasis is a chronic disease that comes and goes.
Tip: You can relieve the symptoms on your scalp by using over-the-counter medicated shampoos. Opt for something containing salicylic acid -- which will soothe your skin and reduce inflammation. Talk to your doctor for a stronger prescription.

5. Sweat
Have you noticed that your scalp feels even itchier during the sunny months? This might be because yousweat more in hot weather. This also explains why your scalp gets itchy after a sweaty session in the gym. 
Tip: If this is the cause of your itchiness, the solution is quite simple -- wash your hair. You might also want to go for hairstyles which allow your scalp to breathe freely during the hot month

Other causes
Don’t panic. This is one of the least common causes of itchy scalp. However, if your scalp has itchy spots, weird bumps, or sores which persist, you might want to havethem checked for melanoma. If positive, your dermatologist will advice on the right course of treatment. Other causes of itchiness include:
• Head lice,
• Scabies
• Ringworm
• Sunburn.

 

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