Hair Care

Natural Home Remedies for Dandruff

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With thick and luscious hair comes lots of problems. Hair issues are fairly common and talking of issues the most common is dandruff. It is a scalp disorder that can be very annoying at times. Dandruff is generally the condition of the dry and dehydrated scalp. Dry scalp can promote the growth of fungus and bacteria in your scalp which in turn leads to itchiness and irritated skin.

Dry skin can also produce dry flakes which in layman’s term is known as dandruff. However, when it comes to dandruff most people just focus on the flakes. They do not get to the bottom of it and never tries to understand their hair better. The problem of dandruff can be quite common but the underlying issues can many. So here in this article, we are going to discuss the causes and symptoms of dandruff along with some home remedies for dandruff by which you can make your scalp healthy again.

What Is Dandruff?

Before we dive into the topic of how to treat and cure dandruff it is very important to know what dandruff is. Dandruff is a common condition that is concerned with the scalp. It is a condition of the scalp that makes the skin of the scalp itchy and flaky. These flakes are usually dead skin cells that are accumulated on the scalp. Dandruff can start at any age by generally the signs are seen around puberty. The problem of dandruff can range from moderate to severe. In most cases, it is not super aggressive and can be treated with over the counter products. But in rare cases, it might require medicated treatment. Our skin is under a continuous cycle of shedding dead skin cells and replenishing it with new skin cells. These dead skin cells are what causes dandruff as the old cells are pushed outward to make way for the new ones. Thee flakes are usually small and unnoticeable. But when these flakes are bigger and they appear as clumps to become visible it means that the skin cells are being replaced more rapidly than usual.

Causes And Symptoms

The main symptoms of dandruff can be easily understood. Dry or oily flakes, scaly itchy scalp are the typical symptoms of dandruff. Your entire hair and shoulders can be covered with white flakes like snow if not treated carefully. The problem of dandruff usually accelerates during the winter months as the air is dry at the time. Now let us try to determine the causes of dandruff. Making out the exact cause of your dandruff can be difficult but here are some general conceptions that might help you out.

  • Seborrheic dermatitis is a condition with oily and irritated skin and this condition can cause the most severe form of dandruff.
  • Not cleansing your hair enough can allow the dead skin cells to accumulate on your scalp leading to dandruff and itchiness.
  • Malassezia which is a form of yeast can also aggravate your scalp and accelerate the growth of new skin cells. This, in turn, can cause the dead skin cells o shed faster leading to dandruff or white flakes.
  • Certain hair care products can also lead to dandruff. Certain ingredients in your hair care products can make your scalp inflamed and irritated that can give rise to dandruff.
  • Diet and lifestyle habits also play a huge rule when it comes to dandruff. When you have a poor diet cycle and you consume too much of oily and fried foods or alcoholic beverages than your scalp can react and produce dandruff.
  • An excessive amount of stress can also cause dandruff along with hair thinning and hair loss.

Men are usually more prone to developing dandruff than women. Also, people with oilier scalp and certain grave diseases like HIV or Parkinson’s disease can be at a huge risk. Dandruff can develop at any age but naturally, the signs of it are quite visible since puberty.

Tips To Take Care Of An Itchy Scalp

Itchy scalp and dryness can be a common symptom of dandruff. However, this condition also means that your scalp is trying to tell you something. Your skin does talk to you and if you listen carefully you will understand what it needs. Dry and irritated or inflamed scalp generally needs an extra amount of care and here are some tips by which you can take care of it. These tips include:

Your Shampoo Might Not Be Your Scalp’s Best Friend

Shampoos play a huge role when it comes to a healthy and irritated scalp. After washing your hair if you feel your scalp to be itchy and irritated then it is quite possible that your scalp does not like the shampoo. There are certain over the counter shampoos available that are formulated especially for dandruff. You can choose from any of them. But getting the right fit is often a difficulty. So if you find yourself lost on the isle of various shampoos then it is better to consult your doctor for specific recommendations. Sometimes alternating shampoos or trying two shapoos at the same time can also prove to be beneficial. You can choose one for dandruff and one for calming and soothing your scalp depending on your needs.

Hydration Is the Key

Just like dry skin requires hydration and moisturization, so does dry scalp. Dry scalp can often be itchy and flaky but these flakes tend to be smaller and less oily. This is the point where your scalp is trying to tell you that it requires moisturization. Restoring the moisture and natural oil balance of the scalp can relieve the dryness and itchiness. You can use coconut oil for moisturizing and hydrating your scalp. Coconut oil has great anti-microbial and anti-bacterial properties therefore it makes a great natural choice for your hair issues.

Stop Scratching And Follow Good Hygiene

Following good personal hygiene can be very beneficial when it comes to maintaining a healthy scalp. Only shampooing is not enough when it comes to getting rid of dandruff. You should also control the urge of scratching your scalp now and then. Dandruff might irritate your scalp but scratching it will only increase the irritation making the case worse. Also, the usage of too many products on the hair can irritate the scalp. These products can increase itchiness and also contribute to dandruff. Eliminating certain unnecessary products and keeping your hair care routine simple and basic can keep your scalp calm and healthy. Start with minimal products and you can include a new product every once in a while whenever your hair feels the need for it.

You Need To Calm Down

Stress And Anxiety can aggravate the problems of dandruff and can make it worse. The yeast Malassezia has nothing to do with stress but if your immune system is compromised then it can thrive. Stress depletes the immune system allowing, fungus, bacteria, and yeast to thrive and grow. If you want to take care of your scalp and want a healthy scalp then you need to lower your stress levels and relax. Try meditation or yoga to keep your stress levels in check. Doing this will prevent any potential triggers of aggravating scalp in the future.

Natural Home Remedies To treat Dandruff

Now that we have learned so much about dandruff let us now see some home remedies that can treat it. Here is a list of selected natural home remedies that can minimize and treat the problem of dandruff. So let us dive into the details of each one of them.

  1. Tea Tree Oil

Tea tree oil has great anti-bacterial and antifungal properties. It is great for acne-prone skin and can also prevent seborrheic dermatitis. It is also one of the many home remedies for dandruff. This oil can be used topically on the skin to get rid of any fungal infection that might lead to dandruff or flaky skin. tea tree oil, however, can irritate people with sensitive skin. so do make sure to do a patch test before you try it. If you have an allergic reaction then avoid this treatment.

Things You Need

  • A few drops of tea tree oil.
  • A few drops of jojoba or sweet almond oil.
  • A small bowl.
  • Cotton balls.

Steps To Follow

  • Take 2-3 drops of tea tree oil in a small bowl.
  • Add 2-3 drops of jojoba or sweet almond oil to it and mix well.
  • Take a cotton ball and dab this mixture onto your scalp. Make sure to cover your entire scalp.
  • You can either keep this overnight or wash after an hour.
  • Wash it with a mild shampoo and col water.

Do this 3-4 times a week for best results.

  1. Coconut Oil

Coconut oil has several benefits when it comes to skin and hair. It can also combat fungal infections that can cause serious issues like Malassezia. Applying coconut oil can also reduce the appearance of flaky skin that can give rise to dandruff. It is also one of the many home remedies for dandruff.

Things You Need

  • Few tablespoons of coconut oil.

Steps To Follow

  • Take 2-3 tablespoons of coconut oil depending on the length of your hair.
  • You can also mix a few drops of tea tree essential oil to it and mix well.
  • Apply this oil onto your scalp and massage gently. If you mix tea tree oil then do not apply the mixture onto the length of your hair.
  • You can keep it for about an hour or can keep it overnight.
  • Wash it with a mild cleanser and cold water.

Do this at least twice a week.

  1. Onion Juice

Onions also have great benefits when it comes to hair. It can strengthen hair and can make it soft and shiny. But when it comes to dandruff researches shows that onions have phytochemical compounds that can combat dandruff. It is also one of the many home remedies for dandruff. The topical application of this juice can eliminate flaking skin and can also stop dandruff from recurring frequently.

Things You Need

  • A small bowl.
  • Cotton ball.

Steps To Follow

  • Take 1-2 onions depending on the length of your hair.
  • Blend the onions in a blender and strain out the juice.
  • Use a cotton ball and apply the juice generously on your scalp.
  • Leave it on for an hour and then rinse off with a mild cleanser.

Do this at least 2 times a week for best results.

  1. Aloe Vera

Aloe Vera is a miracle plant that has been used since ancient times to deal with skin and hair issues. It is rich in bioactive compounds that are great in treating and healing skin issues. It is also one of the many home remedies for dandruff. Aloe vera also possesses anti-microbial and antifungal properties that can fight any fungal infection and can also soothe and calm dry scalp that often leads to dandruff.

Things You Need

  • Aloe vera gel (you can either use fresh aloe vera gel from the plant or can use the drugstore one).

Steps To Follow

  • Take some aloe vera gel on your palm and massage it gently on your scalp.
  • Massage in circular motions to ensure that the gel is absorbed nicely into your scalp.
  • Keep it for an hour and then rinse it off with mild cleanser and plain water.

Do this at least 2-3 times a week for visible results.

  1. Yogurt

Yogurt is a probiotic food that is rich in Lactobacillus paracasei. Researches show that it can reduce dandruff. This element can also restore the natural balance of the scalp microbiome that in turn minimizes the appearance of dandruff. Yogurt is also acidic that can combat dandruff and conditions the hair making it soft, smooth and shiny.

Things You Need

  • Fresh yogurt.

Steps To Follow

  • Take a cup of fresh yogurt and leave it in the open for 1-2 days. This will cause the fermentation of the yogurt.
  • Apply the fermented yogurt on your scalp as a mask.
  • Leave it for about an hour and rinse it off thoroughly using a mild cleanser.

Do this 2-3 times a week for best results. You can also consume yogurt every day to strengthen your hair from the inside and keep your scalp healthy.

  1. Lemongrass Oil

Lemongrass oil is also rich in bioactive compounds. It also possesses antifungal properties. This oil can combat Malassezia or any other type of dandruff caused by yeast.using this oil as a form of treatment can minimize the appearance of dandruff or flaky skin. This can also cause an allergic reaction so do a patch test before you try this remedy out.

Things You Need

  • Lemongrass oil.
  • A mild shampoo.

Steps To Follow

  • Take your regular shampoo but make sure it should be free from sulfates and parabens.
  • Mix 2-3 drops of lemongrass oil into it and massage gently on your scalp.
  • Leave it on for a few minutes and then as it of thoroughly with plain water.

Do this at least 2 times a week for best results.

  1. Eucalyptus Oil

Dandruff is mostly found on scalps that are usually low on ceramide. Eucalyptus oil is supremely rich on ceramide and it also has bioactive compounds that boost the ceramide content in your scalp. When ceramide levels are balanced on the scalp then the problem of dandruff is automatically reduced.

Things You Need

  • A few drops of coconut oil.
  • A few drops of eucalyptus oil.

Steps To Follow

  • Take 2-3 drops of eucalyptus oil and mix it with 2-3 drops of coconut oil.
  • Apply this mixture on your scalp and leave it for about 40-45 minutes.
  • Rinse it off with plain water thoroughly.

Do this at least 2-3 times a week for best results.

  1. Garlic

Garlic is also rich in bioactive components. It is specifically rich in allicin and ajoene. It also has antifungal properties that can alleviate the fungal infection on the scalp. This is why using garlic can reduce the formation of dandruff as it can be used as natural home remedies for dandruff.

Things You Need

  • A few garlic cloves.
  • Olive oil.

Steps To Follow

  • Take the garlic cloves and peel the skin.
  • Once this is done crush the garlic cloves and transfer it into a pan.
  • Add ½ cup olive oil into the pan and heat it for about 5 minutes.
  • Let it cool down a little and then strain the mixture.
  • Apply this onto your scalp and leave it on for about 30-45 minutes.
  • Wash it thoroughly with plain water.

Do this remedy at least 2 times a week.

  1. Neem Oil

Neem has several anti-bacterial properties. It is used since ancient times to treat and cure skin and hair problems. The extracts from the neem leaves can also cure fungal infections. This antifungal property can reduce irritation on the scalp and can also minimize flaking.

Things You Need

  • A few drops of neem oil.
  • A few drops of coconut oil.

Steps to follow

  • Take 2-3 drops of neem oil and mix it with 2-3 drops of coconut oil.
  • Apply this mixture onto your scalp and massage gently.
  • Leave it on for about 40-45 minutes and then rinse it off with plain water.

Do this 2-3 times a week for best results.

  1. Baking Soda

Baking soda is another anti-fungal agent. This is why it is useful in treating dandruff. It fights the overactive fungi that cause dandruff. It is also a great exfoliant and can remove dead skin cells which can reduce flaking. Baking soda also soaks up the excess sebum from the scalp keeping it nice and fresh thereby eliminating another cause of dandruff. This remedy might feel a little drying at the beginning but the natural oils produced from the scalp will balance the dryness.

Things You Need

  • Baking soda.

Steps To Follow

  • Take 2-3 tablespoons of baking soda.
  • Gently wet your hair and apply the baking soda on your hair concentrating more on the scalp.
  • Leave it on for about 2 minutes and rinse it off with plain water thoroughly.
  • You can also use a mild cleanser to take off any residue left of baking soda.

Do this twice a week for best results.

  1. Lemon Juice

Lemon Juice is a rich and potent source of citric acid. This acid can break down the fungus on the scalp that causes dandruff. It is natural and is free from harsh chemicals that often ruin our hair than doing any good to it. Our scalp has a natural pH level of 5.5 and acidic ingredients can keep these levels balanced. A balnced scalp will see an automatic reduction in dandruff. Also, lemon juice can be allergic so do a patch test before you try out this remedy. Also if you feel a stinging sensation for too long then do no do this treatment.

Things You Need

  • Cotton ball.

Steps To Follow

  • Take 1-2 lemons and squeeze out the juice from it.
  • Take 2-3 tablespoons of this juice and apply it on your scalp with the help of a cotton ball.
  • Leave it on for about 10 minutes and then wash it of with a mild shampoo.

Do this twice a week for best results.

  1. Green Tea

Green tea is a great antioxidant and also a great detox agent. It also has anti-microbial properties that promote a healthy scalp. Studies show that green tea is rich in EGCG and polyphenols that can affect fungal infections. So using green tea as a remedy can eliminate dandruff and can also soothe and condition the hair.

Things You Need

  • Green Tea.
  • Peppermint essential oil.
  • Warm water.
  • White vinegar.

Steps To Follow

  • Add warm water to 2-3 green tea bags.
  • Let it cool down a bit and then add 2-3 drops of peppermint essential oil.
  • Add a ytablespoon of white vinegar to it.
  • Wet your hair and pour this rinse on your hair.
  • Massage the mixture onto your scalp and let it stay for about 5 minutes.
  • Rinse it off with a mild shampoo and follow it up with a conditioner.

Do this twice a week for best results.

  1. Apple Cider Vinegar

ACV has powerful anti-bacterial properties. It is also great for destroying the fungus that causes dandruff. ACV provides relief from itchiness instantly and also gets rid of dandruff in just a few uses. It also soothes and reduces any infection that might be caused due to dandruff. Also, remember that raw ACV can burn or irritate the skin. so always make sure to dilute it before use.

Things You Need

  • Raw Apple cider vinegar.

Steps To Follow

  • Take 1 tablespoon of ACV and dilute it in 3 tablespoons of water. Apply the solutyion onto your scalp.
  • Leave it on for about a few minutes and then rinse it off with a mild shampoo.

Do this once or twice a week for best results.

How To Prevent Dandruff?

Now that we have seen the home remedies that you can tyry to treat dandruff. You should also know how to prevent it. Dandruff can actually because due to dry scalp. So here is a list of prevention tips that you can follow to keep it at bay.

  • Do not wash your hair daily.
  • Use mild shampoos and shampoos that are free from harsh chemicals that can strip away the natural moisture of the scalp.
  • Use hair products that do not disturb the natural pH level of the scalp.
  • Keep yourself hydrated by drinking lots of water.
  • Avoid frequent usage of hairstyling and heat tools. A product such as a mousse, hair sprays and gels can leave residue on your scalp that might lead to dandruff. Also, the heat styling tool makes your hair and scalp dry.

Is Dandruff Contagious?

Dandruff can be an embarrassing and aggravating problem, but it is not contagious. It is quite common and there is nothing to feel ashamed of. This is not a condition where you can give your snowflakes to anyone or gain anyone’s either just by sitting close to each other. It has much to do with one’s own body than who the person stays or spends time with. It is just a pesky scalp condition that can be treated and it does not involve any grave long-term problems.

Medical Treatment For Dandruff

If dandruff is severe then medical treatment might be required. There are several medical options available commercially to treat dandruff. The products used in medical treatments are broadly classified into three main categories. These are:

Antifungal Agents

These agents are useful in eliminating the fungal infection from your scalp. It also removes any infection on the forehead that can give rise to flaky skin or dandruff. Antifungal agents contain selenium sulfide and zinc pyrithione. These ingredients can eliminate any fungal infection which normally rises from Malassezia or any other yeast.

Flake Removing Agents

These agents have keratolytic ingredients which enable flaky skin to loosen up and get washed away. Ingredients such as sulfur and salicylic acid are great for this purpose.

Anti-Inflammatory Agents

Steroids that are available topically can have anti-inflammatory properties. Medications like corticosteroids can reduce the infection on the scalp that can lead to seborrheic dermatitis. It can also reduce the appearance of dandruff on the scalp.

When To See A Doctor

Dandruff is a very normal and common condition. It can be treated with the usage of over the counter products and some changes in lifestyle habits. It does not involve any grave issue and in most cases does not involve a dermatologist. But if these changes do not help with your dandruff condition or with your itchy scalp then it is probably time to see a doctor. This is because dandruff is not the only reason that can give you itchy and irritated scalp. You can have deep-set skin conditions like eczema, psoriasis or fungal infection. In such cases, your dermatologist can look into the matter carefully and recommend the necessary products. If your itchy scalp tends to get red pr swollen then be sure to immediately visit a doctor. See if these conditions interfere with your everyday life or if the redness spreads to your face and other parts of the body.

That was all for this article. If you follow these remedies and measures that you can control your issue of dandruff. However, if you still feel that dandruff continues to exist then you should definitely visit a dermatologist.

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