SCALP CONDITIONS – DISEASES & DISORDERS

scalp conditions, specialist help, trichologist

What Are They?

Scalp conditions include dandruff (Pityriasis), Psoriasis, Seborrheic Dermatitis & Contact Dermatitis. These scalp conditions affect up to 50% of the population, male and female equally but thankfully it is rare for children to be affected.

Symptoms included within these scalp conditions are a feeling of tightness, inflammation and various degrees of itchiness (pruritis) on the surface of the scalp. Each scalp condition can be differentiated by the level of skin scale production that forms over the scalp surface and whether the scalp condition affects the growing hair too.


Scalp Diseases and Scaling disorders

There are a variety of scalp conditions often scalp itching may be a symptom of: Scalp Eczema, Scalp Psoriasis, Dandruff, Seborrhoeic Dermatitis, Pediculus Capitis (head lice) & Irritant or allergic reactions. Many of which are chronic scalp conditions that may be controlled. It is important to treat scalp conditions and scalp under the stress of disease carefully as hair follicles may go into a resting state, these then fail to produce hairs, resulting in hair loss. Once the scalp condition has been treated, the hair growth may return to normal.

 

Dandruff (Pityriasis simplex)

The most well publicized Dandruff is dry flake scaling is small, white, freely sheds away and is greatly mistaken for the greasier form of Dandruff. Dry flaking Dandruff can be considered a very natural skin cell renewal process, just as the rest of your body skin cells function, unless there are other signs / symptoms that could indicate Seborrheic Eczema.

Dandruff is often a “greasy yellow scaling” that adheres to the scalp surface. It is notoriously tricky to remove and even affects babies in the form of cradle cap.

A more serious variant type is Pityriasis is Pityriasis Amiantacea, this dandruff can adhere the growing hair to the scalp surface, creating small temporary hair loss patches, as it comes away with the skin scale attached.
What can be done?

 

Seborrheic Eczema / Dermatitis
Seborrheic Eczema is a term covering any superficial inflammation of the outer epidermis layer of the skin. It is evident by redness and itching of varying degrees with minute spots that rupture and weep to form a crusting on the surface of the scalp. This scalp disorder is controllable unfortunately does not include a curable prognosis. What can be done?

 

Contact Dermatitis
Even though the scalp is considered to be resistant to a number of irritants, the use of variety of chemicals i.e. perming lotions, bleaches, etc. can cause contact reaction dermatitis (inflammation of the skin) and in certain cases structural hair breakage and hair loss from Hair disasters are reported.

Once contact Dermatitis breaks the skin’s sensitivity you will always be susceptible to reoccurrence if you don’t avoid your contact colorant, irritant dye or lotion. This scalp condition requires medical assistance if an allergic reaction occurs. What can be done?

 

Psoriasis
Psoriasis of the scalp is usually a chronic recurrent problem, often hereditary and is considered the most irritable and stubborn scalp disorder to treat.

The scalp is marked by discrete bright red patches/lesions covered with silvery skin scale. When these lesions are lifted they show bleeding and weeping points within the site. The exact cause of Psoriasis is unknown and is non infectious but scratching of the intense itch may lead to secondary infection. What can be done?


What Can Be Done?

The two main issues surrounding many scalp condition are the flaky unsightly skin that is left on the shoulders and of course the itchy, dry skin that is so difficult to control and relieve.

In most cases treatment can offer relief from irritation and remove much of the crusty flaky skin. In the majority of cases we are able to control or in certain conditions remove (chronic or acute) scalp conditions within a relatively short space of time with limited cost to the patient.

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