Treatments for Eliminating Dandruff

By: Juliet Cohen

Dandruff is a chronic condition. Dandruff, a condition characterized by flaking, itchy scalp, is one of the most common dermatological conditions. Dandruff is very common. It affects more than 50% of the population of the USA. It can occur at any age, but is most likely in the early 20s. Everyone has some Malassezia yeast on their skin, particularly in the greasy areas such as the scalp and upper back. It feeds on the natural grease of the skin, from which it produces oleic acid. The oleic acid triggers increased turnover of skin cells, resulting in dandruff. So, getting rid of the yeast should improve the dandruff.

Dandruff can be caused by nutritional deficiencies, such as a lack of vitamin B, or essential fatty acids. Hormones may also be involved, because dandruff usually starts after puberty and is more common in men than women. For unknown reasons, people with some illnesses, such as Parkinson's disease, are more likely to have dandruff. Seborrhoeic dermatitis is more common in people with HIV, and those with an underlying neurological illness, such as Parkinson's disease.Dandruff is most severe during the winter and mildest during the summer. Dandruff scales usually occur as small, round, white-to-gray patches on top of the head.

Dandruff can almost always be controlled. In general, mild scaling can often be helped by daily cleansing with a gentle shampoo to reduce oiliness and cell buildup. The most effective treatment of dandruff is an anti-yeast shampoo containing ketoconazole. Antidandruff conditioners are also available. Selenium sulfide shampoos (Selsun, Exsel) shampoos help prevent cell turnover and may also reduce the number of malassezia. Garlic and oil of oregano are also excellent for fighting dandruff. coal tar contains a natural anti-fungal agent also useful in dandruff. Nizoral shampoo is also unique in that it's effect is long-lasting.

Diet plays an important role in the treatment of dandruff. To begin with, the patient should resort to an all-fruit diet for about five days and take three meals a day of juicy fruits. Eggs and cabbage also provide vitamin B6 in addition to supplying sulfur which is nature's beauty mineral for the scalp. The use of a teaspoon of fresh lime juice for the last rinse, while washing the hair, is another useful remedy. The juice of snake gourd has been found beneficial in the prevention and treatment of dandruff. Meats, sugar, white flour, strong tea or coffee, condiments, pickles, refined and processed foods should all be avoided.

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