Does Dandruff Cause Hair Loss?
People with severe dandruff sometimes suffer hair loss. But dandruff is not the actual cause of that loss. Instead, it is another symptom of a condition that causes an itching, flaky scalp along with thinning hair.
Does dandruff cause hair loss?
Dandruff is a dry, itching flaking of the scalp, a symptom of a bigger skin problem. You can suffer this flaking and itching because of dry skin, a reaction to shampoos or other hair products, diet, stress or other conditions. Your problem can also relate to a medical condition like seborrheic dermatitis, scalp ringworm, scalp psoriasis or eczema. Some of these skin conditions also cause hair loss.
While dandruff is not a direct cause of hair loss, your itchy and flaking scalp can cause you to injure your scalp through scratching. When you scratch this delicate skin, you cause inflammation of hair follicles. Repeated inflammation leads to scarring that slows or stops hair growth.
When you find signs of a flaky scalp of feel itchy, you should seek treatment from your dermatologist. Otherwise, you face scalp damage and the potential for hair loss.
Causes of Dandruff with Hair Loss
Conditions causing both dandruff and hair loss include:
- Fungal infections, such as ringworm, with dry flaking of skin and hair possibly falling out in clumps
- Scalp psoriasis, an autoimmune condition that causes flaking with patches of bald spots
- Folliculitis decalvans, an inflammatory condition that destroys hair follicles and causes itching and flaking
- Lichen planopilaris, a dry and flaking rash that can cause hair to fall out in clumps
- Seborrheic dermatitis, causing red or gray scaly rash and oily patches that can damage hair follicles
Sometimes people have unrelated conditions of hair loss when they develop scalp itching and flaking. Typical conditions that cause loss of hair, balding or thinning, include:
- Male pattern baldness due to hormonal imbalance
- Telogen effluvium, hair loss related to infection, stress or injury
- Alopecia areata, autoimmune disease-related hair loss
- Scalp infections, scarring or inflammation
Preventing Hair Loss with Scalp Itching and Flaking
Dandruff frequently comes and goes in people who have experienced the flaky and itching skin condition. If you suffer flare-ups of these symptoms, see your dermatologist for advice and treatment.
You can prevent loss of hair related to dandruff by following some of the tips below:
- See your dermatologist or other doctor if your itching or flaking does not go away when using medicated shampoo or other types of treatment
- If you lose hair in clumps, see your doctor to find out if you have a scalp or hair-related condition
- Wash your hair regularly
- Read your medicated shampoo directions to ensure you use the solution properly, such as leaving it on your hair for the appropriate amount of time
- Avoid stressing your hair through aggressive brushing, pulling or twisting
- Do not massage or scratch your scalp
- Seek medication for unbearable itching and to avoid damaging your follicles through scratching
- Seek medical help at the first signs of itching and flaking, rather than waiting for an extended period of time
- Use a quality hair conditioning treatment after your medicated shampoo, to avoid drying out your hair
The American Academy of Dermatology recommends that Asians and Caucasians wash their hair daily. African Americans should wash their hair weekly, according to this medical association. If you notice signs of hair drying or damage when using medicated shampoo, reduce its use to every other day, alternating with a quality shampoo and conditioning treatment.
Dandruff Does Not Mean Your Hair Will Fall Out
Having dandruff does not mean your hair will fall out. This common skin condition affects most people at least once or twice in their lifetime. Other people have the condition more frequently. The key to avoiding loss of hair, scalp damage or hair damage is in managing your symptoms through the right treatment. Left untreated, the condition can accelerate hair thinning or balding from other causes.
Help for Thinning Hair and Balding in Raleigh, NC
In Raleigh and Apex, North Carolina, AZ Hair Restoration offers two locations to conveniently help you with treatment for hair loss. If you notice your hairline receding or signs of thinning hair or male pattern balding, set a consultation appointment with Dr. Arthur Zacco today. Through online consultation or an in-office visit, you can learn about the causes of your thinning hair, as well as solutions available to improve its growth.