Dandruff is a very common scalp condition. In its mild form, it consists of loose white flakes, which fall off and may be noticed on the shoulders, back or scalp. Sometimes, the flakes may be yellowish in color.
Even mild dandruff can be accompanied by itching. Many scalp conditions, from mild flaking of the scalp to an extreme form, are commonly referred to as dandruff.
However, it is important to remember that dandruff can become a serious problem. It can lead to an inflammatory scalp condition, spreading to eyebrows, forehead, ears and back. Or, it may be a severe form of scaling, as in seborrheic dermatitis.
Dandruff can also lead to other problems, like acne or a rashy skin, and can even trigger off hair loss. Scratching the scalp, in itchy forms of dandruff, can also lead to secondary bacterial infections.
It is, therefore, important to know how to tackle a dandruff problem, even if it is mild. It is not something one has to live with at all. For this, you will also need to know what dandruff is, how it is caused, as well as the factors that can aggravate it.
Common dandruff usually consists of the dead cells that are shed by the skin, to be replaced by new ones. This is normal process. Sometimes, however, there can be a build-up of dead cells on the scalp. These are what we refer to as dandruff scales.
The scales, along with sebaceous secretions, tend to stick to the scalp and together make up the common condition known as dandruff. The build-up of cells and excessive secretion of sebum can occur due to hormonal activity, at times of stress, due to some hair-care or hair-styling product, or even due to faulty diets and lifestyle.
When people see the dandruff flakes, they generally assume that they have a dry-scalp condition. Dandruff, however, is more commonly due to oiliness of the scalp.
The collection of hardened sebum and dead skin cells can block the pores of the scalp, preventing the free flow of natural oil along the hair shaft. This result in hair that is dry and dull, in spite of an oily scalp.
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Treatment Of Dandruff:
- The treatment of dandruff involves the use of some specialized products for the regular care of the hair. It is essential to use a medicated hair tonic. Anti-dandruff specially formulated fight dandruff and restore the health of the scalp.
- It contains herbal extracts of amla, jatamansi and bilwa and such ingredients that help to create a germicidal environment and also restore the normal acid-alkaline balance of the scalp.
- For cleansing of hair, choose a mild herbal shampoo that not only helps to cleanse the hair and scalp. But, without disturbing the normal balances but also helps to restore the acid-alkaline balance.
- This is important, as an alkaline surface encourages bacterial activity. One should exercise caution while deciding on anti-dandruff preparation, as many of these are too harsh.
- They can upset the delicate balance of the scalp, or cause sensitivity, or irritative reactions. Remember that the scalp is already in a sensitive condition. To protect hair and scalp, the use of a herbal hair rinse is also recommended.
- Regular conditioning with henna goes a long way in controlling dandruff and bringing back health and beauty to hair. Henna is a highly effective cleanser and helps to remove the build-up of dead cells and sebum.
- If you have an extreme form of dandruff, or an infection, you should maintain good hygiene. Keep your comb, towels and pillow-covers scrupulously clean, washing them daily.
- If necessary, so that you reduce the chances of re-infection. Whenever you wash your hair, soak your combs and brushes in a mug of hot water, with an antiseptic lotion.
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- Dandruff successfully treated with clinical treatments and regular home care, using specialized products.
- The clinical treatments consists of a course of several sittings, taken on a daily or weekly basis, depending on the severity of the condition.
- It may even be necessary to take more than one course of sittings.
- The clinical treatment helps to create a germicidal surface on the scalp and also stimulates the hair follicles.
- Medicated anti-dandruff hair tonics are also applied and the head is exposed to a steamer to open the pores.
- This not only helps to remove the secretions that cause pore blockage, but also aids better absorption of the products applied on the scalp.
- Since professional clinical treatments are available, it is best to refer your problem to a professional care clinic.
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Apply on scalp with cotton wool, once daily. There is no need to wash hair after application.
Herbal Hair Oil
Apply at night, before washing your hair. Leave it on overnight.
Wash hair twice a week.
Apply daily for 8 days, then thrice a week, then twice a week and finally once a week.
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- It has been established that faulty diet can trigger off dandruff, or even causes the condition to flare.
- It is essential to have plenty of fresh fruits and raw salads daily.
- Drink plenty of water and take whole grains cereals.
- In case you suffer from dietary deficiencies, consult your doctor for vitamin and mineral supplements.
- Cut down on salt, sugar, fried foods and fried snacks, as well as aerated drinks.
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- You should get enough exercise daily, and regular sleep.
- Smoking, alcohol and coffee can cause an accumulation of toxins in the system and also interfere with the proper absorption of the essential nutrients.
- At times of stress, follow a conscious method of relaxation.
- Deep breathing exercise are very helpful in reducing stress.
- Before starting any exercise programme, get your doctor’s green signal.