Many people are plagued by an itchy scalp, and feel embarrassed and frustrated by it. Here are some common causes of scalp itch, and what can be done to relieve the itch.
1. Dandruff – skin flakes from the scalp – is a common cause of itchy scalp. It is a condition known as seborrheic dermatitis, which usually affects the scalp and may also cause rashes at the forehead and eyebrows. More prevalent in people with oily skin and scalp, this condition is due to overgrowth of a harmless yeast called Malassezia.
Treatment for dandruff includes using a shampoo that contains salicylic acid to exfoliate dead skin cells and reduce oiliness on the scalp. Medicated shampoos such as ketoconazole, zinc pyrithione, or selenium sulphide can also be used to control overgrowth of the Malassezia yeast. If there are rashes, steroid lotions or creams may be prescribed by your doctor if deemed necessary.
2. Reaction to shampoo or other chemicals
The scalp is subjected to many chemical exposures – from hair products to environmental pollutants. An itchy scalp can actually be due to dry and sensitive scalp as a result of these chemical exposures. A mild, non-fragranced shampoo is more suitable for people with dry and sensitive scalp.
Duo Hydrogen scalp treatment available at our medispa provides a thorough yet gentle exfoliation of the scalp and targets these causes of scalp itch. This treatment uses jet suction technology with a solution of purified hydrogen water to deeply cleanse the scalp, and reduce oiliness and itch. A customised serum is chosen to target specific scalp issues that you are facing – such as sterilisation of bacteria and yeast, providing hydration and soothing sensitive scalp, and detoxifying by removing free radicals and reactive oxygen species. Your scalp will feel cleansed and soothed.
3. Ringworm / fungal infection of the scalp is a cause of itchy scalp. If severe, hair loss may also occur. It is best to seek treatment early.
4. Skin conditions such as eczema and psoriasis can affect the scalp as well as other parts of the body. These often occur together with a rash and/or flaky skin. Medicated creams and lotions will be required to control these skin conditions.
5. Head lice or scabies can cause intense itching of the scalp. It can occur in toddlers and children, and can spread easily among family members as well. Fortunately, head lice and/or scabies infestation can be easily treated.
If you suspect that your scalp itch is due to any of these conditions, do consult with our doctors for an assessment and treatment. You can contact us at +65 6836 8386 for book enquiries or if you have further questions. Healthsprings Laser and Aesthetic Clinic (Orchard) is at 541 Orchard Road, #11-01 Liat Towers, Singapore 238881.