Seborrheic Dermatitis, also know as seborrheic eczema is a common problem in general population. It almost affect 5% of the total population. It is harmless,chronic, superficial, inflammatory disease characterized as flake like scaly patches associated with burning or itching. The scales often are yellow or greasy appearance. Seborrhoic dermatitis can affect any parts including eyebrows, eyelids, nasolabial creases, ears, lips, sternum, axillae, umbilicus, groin, gluteal crease and most commonly scalp. Here we’ll discuss the treatment options for seborrheic  dermatitis of the scalp.

Seborrheic  Dermatitis of the scalp is most common in winter and early spring and almost goes out during summer.  Dandruff is also a mild form of seborrheic dermatitis. The casautive factor for seborrheic dermatitis is complex but studies shows lipophilic yeast pitryrosporum ovale is the main culprit behind it. Various medications like chlorpromazine, cimetidine, haloperidol, lithium, gold and psoralens may also cause or aggravate seborrheic dermatitis. Seborrheic dermatitis is not contagious or related to diet and can be easily treated with proper scalp care .

Some cases that  resembles like seborrheic dermatitis may actually be scalp psoriasis, so consult your dermatologist or general physician before you start any over the counter treatments. These two disease may sometime overlap, but psoriasis tends to have more heavier silvery scales which bleeds easily when scalp are removed and itching may be severe in seborrheic dermatitis then in scalp psoriasis.

What are the treatment for Seborrheic Dermatitis of scalp ?

For some less severe cases of scalp seborrheic dermatitis or dandruff,  normal regular shampoo might do the trick. Moderate cases can be treated with over the counter medications containing selenium sulfide, tar, ketoconazole, zinc pyrithione, salicylic acid, fluocinolone and resorcin. These shampoos should be used not more then 2-3 times a week with a regular shampoo in between as required.  If you use any hair spray, wax and creams to style your hair, it should be completely stopped.

There are many types of options available on market including shampoos, sprays, creams,ointments, gels, lotions and  oils containing either above mentions medications alone or with combination with mild corticosteroids. Corticosteroids lotions will give the quick results when used for short time, but these agents are not suggested for longterm use and not suggested for use in face as it may give rise to corticosteroids induced rosacea. So avoid using steroids until and unless prescribed by your dermatologist.

In some severe and unresponsive cases of  Seborrheic Dermatitis of scalp oral medications may also be taken with prescription. They may include some antifungal medications like fluconazole and ketoconazole. These medications are usually used in combination with topical medications for better and fast result. Seborrheic dermatitis may come and go, there is no permanent cure. Be sure to take proper hygienic majors to avoid future outbreaks and  using antifungal shampoo once  every 2-3 months might prevent future outbreaks.

If you have any questions regarding seborrheic dermatitis treatment please ask us at our skin care forum.