Dandruff can often be a chronic condition, but it can be controlled with the proper treatment. First, try shampooing with a non-medicated shampoo, massaging the scalp firmly, and then rinsing well. Frequent shampooing removes flakes, reduces oiliness, and prevents dead skin cell buildup. If this fails to help, special antidandruff shampoos are usually helpful. Instructions for use depend on the specific shampoo used. Some are used on a daily basis, while other are used only once or twice weekly.
When selecting an over-the-counter shampoo, look for antidandruff ingredients such as ketoconazole*, selenium sulfide, salicylic acid, sulfur, coal tar, or zinc pyrithione. You may need to try a few products before you find the one that works for you. Shampoos that contain ketoconazole appear to be more effective in the treatment of seborrheic dermatitis and dandruff when compared with other non-prescription medicated shampoos. Salicylic acid preparations are mostly used for dandruff caused by psoriasis, while sulfur and coal tar preparations are generally used for dandruff caused by seborrheic dermatitis.
If non-prescription preparations are not successful after 2 weeks, or if the condition worsens, you should consider seeing a doctor. A doctor may prescribe a corticosteroid lotion to be applied to the scalp. Never use corticosteroids for a long period of time without advice from a doctor. They can thin out the skin and cause other side effects.
For an infant with cradle cap, apply a small amount of mineral oil to the dry areas of the scalp to soften the scales and then shampoo it out. Then remove the scales by gentle brushing. You can then wash the infant's hair with mild baby shampoo. If these measures do not help, try applying a small amount of warmed mineral oil at bedtime and then shampooing it out in the morning. If this isn't effective, talk to your child's doctor about next steps.
In general, corticosteroid shampoos and lotions are not used on infants, as infants absorb them much more easily through the skin than adults do. The good news is that cradle cap usually disappears eventually without any treatment within the first year of a baby's life.
To help keep dandruff under control, shampoo frequently, reduce your stress levels, try reducing your use of hair products (e.g., gels and sprays), and eat a healthy diet.
*All medications have both common (generic) and brand names. The brand name is what a specific manufacturer calls the product (e.g., Tylenol®). The common name is the medical name for the medication (e.g., acetaminophen). A medication may have many brand names, but only one common name. This article lists medications by their common names. For information on a given medication, check our Drug Information database. For more information on brand names, speak with your doctor or pharmacist.
All material copyright MediResource Inc. 1996 – 2017. Terms and conditions of use. The contents herein are for informational purposes only. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition. Source: www.medbroadcast.com/condition/getcondition/Dandruff