What Causes Itchy Scalp?
Since there are many causes for itchy scalp, it is important to consider each as an individual case. Less serious causes of itchy scalp can easily be remedied. There are some that will need medical treatment in order to achieve a cure. For instance, most dandruff is not a medical emergency. Neither is dry skin, which itches and happens especially during the cold months. Both of these conditions can generally be treated with some over the counter items such as shampoo with Emu Oil. More serious are conditions such as psoriasis which results in intense itching. Pediculosis or being infested with head lice will also cause enormous pruritus.
Fungal Infections Of The Scalp
Tinea Capitis is a fungal infection that involves the head. It is often called ringworm but has nothing to do with any sort of parasite. It is caused by a dermatophyte called Trichophyton and is contagious, easily transferring from one person to another. It is most often transmitted by children when sharing combs and caps. Pets, especially cats and kittens can transmit the disease easily in particular when children are involved.
Who Is More Prone To Itchy Scalp?
People with depressed immunity may be more prone to a pruritic scalp. If a patient is taking anti-rejection medication after an organ transplant, their immunity is severely compromised which provides the perfect setting for fungal infections which can be on the scalp. These infections are hard to treat and will cause much frustration. If the pruritus is due to head lice, there are many natural cures a person might look into. Often these will start with products for the hair and scalp to products for the linens if lice are involved.
What Is The Treatment For Itchy Scalp?
Treatment for this condition depends on the erstwhile cause. Seborrheic dermatitis, the medical term for cradle cap and dandruff is a common diagnosis and in adults can be treated with Follicleanse shampoo if home remedies aren’t working. If pruritus is caused by parasites, such as head lice, treatment will be multifold. All members of the household will have to be treated with Permethrin which is an over-the-counter medicated shampoo. Bedding will have to be washed in hot water and then dried in the drier for at least twenty minutes. Clothes that had been worn the last 48 hours need also be washed in hot water and dryer dried. Nits must be combed out of hair with a fine toothed comb. Allergies are often what causes itchy scalp.
This is where detective work must be employed to learn which substance or food or beauty product is at the root of this problem. Once its identity is known, avoidance is the best treatment. Drug allergies can cause the most acute itching. Changing the drug will eliminate pruritus.
Itchy Scalp Secondary To Another Disease
When pruritus of the scalp is the result of psoriasis, then treatment may not be very simple. There have been incidences where psoriasis flared up and caused such extensive itching that several bleeding points were created that resulted in infection through bacterial contamination from fingernails.
The dilemma then lies in choosing to alleviate the psoriasis and threat of infection or choosing to protect the patients liver from the effects of methotrexate if milder medications have become inadequate. For many of these scalp problems, itchy scalp and hair loss tend to go hand-in-hand. Most often using a zinc-based shampoo or moisturizing shampoo works well to kill bacterial, lessen oils on the scalp and to treat infections.