Ever woke up one morning and discovered white/yellow particles falling off your hair while you are itching or combing? Then it feels like it keeps on increasing and falling on your tops wherever you go. First thing that comes to your mind is DANDRUFF.
There is actually something that must be put into consideration before concluding that flakes falling from your hair are the result of dandruff, and that is to ensure that they are not as a result of dryness or excessive friction with your caps and hats.
How can you be sure?
Where dandruff causes shedding of small oily flakes, dryness results in smaller dry flakes
So, what is this Dandruff?
One of the most common problems with afro-textured hair is dandruff, also known as seborrhea or flakes. Dandruff is caused when small bits of dry skin are shed from the scalp. Dandruff, defined by itchy, white flakes of skin on your scalp, can be both uncomfortable and embarrassing. It can be aggravating to have chronic dandruff. Although dandruff usually has no serious side effects, persistent itching may cause discomfort or inflammation if scratched excessively.
And The Cause?
The most common cause of dandruff is seborrheic dermatitis, which causes your skin to become oily, red, and scaly. Dandruff is caused when the white or yellow scales flake off. Seborrheic dermatitis can occur anywhere there are oil glands, such as your brows, groin, armpits, chest, upper back, ears, and along the sides of your nose.
In previous articles, we have always mentioned two things: avoidance of hair products with harsh chemicals as ingredients and reduction of products used on the hair regularly.
Dandruff is sometimes caused by skin irritation or sensitivity, which is why it is critical to check out what ingredients are used to make your favourite hair product. It is not contagious, but it is unsightly both in public and in private, and the flakes that fall can be very visible if you are not paying attention. It quickly and widely spreads.
Is it possible to get rid of dandruff completely?
Although completely getting rid of dandruff is a stretch and close to impossible, it can be controlled if the individual follows the proper care procedures and treatment. Dandruff is most common between the ages of 10 and 20, and it affects many people over the age of 30.
What Should I Do When I See Flakes?
Now that we have mentioned the causes of dandruff, the next question is what can you do when you comb your hair one morning and you notice the flakes falling off. Here are some tips that can help :
- Do not panic
It might sound funny but it is certainly true and important (that’s why it is the first on the list). Relax and think back, what do you think might have caused it? Even if you are not still sure what the cause is, it’s fine.
- Enough washing
One of the common misconceptions about dandruff is that dry scalp is a major cause; however, this is not the case; dandruff causes dry scalp and itch. The flakes produced by dryness are thinner than those produced by wetness. Aside from that, studies have shown that dandruff thrives on extremely oily scalps. If you have an oily scalp or skin, make sure to wash your hair regularly to reduce the oil buildup on the scalp. The frequency of hair washing for dandruff control varies from person to person, but it is recommended that you wash your hair 2 – 3 times per week with shampoos that do not contain Sodium Laureth Sulphate (check the labels for SLS).
- Try anti-dandruff shampoos and conditioner
Washing is mentioned in the previous point, but what do you use? Regular shampoo and conditioner will no longer work in this situation; instead, look for anti-dandruff or medicated dandruff shampoo and conditioner in local drugstores and supermarkets. Also, ensure the shampoo you buy at the store (contains antifungal like selenium sulfide, pyrithione zinc, salicylic acid, ketoconazole, or tar) has anti-dandruff written on it. Also, always ensure you follow the directions written on the label of your shampoo and conditioner, do not extend or reduce the application time for whatever reason.
- Tea tree oil
Tea tree oil is an antifungal, antiseptic, and antiseptic essential oil. The good news is that tea tree oil is an ingredient in many hair products, including shampoo and conditioner, as well as dandruff-fighting hair cream. That is, you do not have to go around looking for the oil on your own for your hair care. Its excellent compounds can help keep the scalp and hair hydrated and relieve any scalp irritation that may be present.
If you have an oily skin/scalp, be careful with oil usage so as to reduce the risk of dandruff.
- Aloe Vera works wonders
Except if you are allergic to aloe vera, the gel can be used to control dandruff. All you have to do is peel off the skin and scrape the gel mixed with 2-3 tablespoons of apple cider vinegar in a container, and apply the paste on the scalp for 30 minutes to 1 hour. The hair is then washed off with a mild shampoo, this procedure once or twice a week will not only reduce dandruff in the hair but also serve as a preventive measure.
- Lay off excessive hair products
As previously stated, there are avoidable drawbacks to using hair products. You do not have to use every product recommended to you by a friend or coworker; instead, learn what works for your hair and what causes it to break. Excessive product use not only increases the risk of applying harsh chemicals to the hair, but can also result in product buildup in the hair, which is one of the causes of dandruff.
If you notice flakes, it is best to halt production for the time being; we don’t want to add fuel to the fire.
- Consult a professional
After trying the listed methods and still noticing no reduction in dandruff, it is advisable to visit a professional (either a dermatologist or a doctor). No matter what else you want to try, having a prescription and extensive knowledge of the reason why is best so as not to complicate whatever irritation is going on.
- Baking soda
Yes, baking soda works wonders when it comes to the reduction of dandruff. The problem is that the continuous and regular use of baking soda on the hair can cause a lot of damage to the hair, which is why even though baking soda is advised, there is always a note of warning. This is why right here, we will not be recommending baking soda to non-professional
“Sometimes, all you need to do is relax and take a break from your constant stressful activities, that might be all you need” – MyHairDo
There are several myths surrounding dandruff, let us know in the comment section the ones you have heard.