Here’s Help for Dandruff

Dandruff is the excess shedding of the top layer of the skin on the scalp.  It is normal for these cells to be shed.  However, with dandruff, larger “scales” are shed at an increased rate.  There is nothing medically serious about it.  It will not lead to baldness, and it is not contagious.

Those who have acne or oily skin also tend to have more problems with dandruff.  The cause is unclear.  Frequent washing with a regular shampoo is the most important treatment for dandruff.  If frequent washing with a regular shampoo does not control dandruff, try a dandruff shampoo.  Dermatologists recommend alternating a regular shampoo with an antifungal dandruff shampoo when dandruff appears.  Dandruff shampoos may need to be used routinely to control dandruff.  As symptoms improve, you may use them less frequently.

Seek medical help if:

  • Itching associated with dandruff increases
  • Using a dandruff shampoo fails to control the problem adequately
  • Inflammation (redness, swelling, severe scaling) occurs on the scalp or on other parts of the body

Source:  University Health Services, University of Michigan