There are a lot of problems one must deal with when it comes to your hair. Is it too dry? Is it oily? Do you have straight or curly hair? Then, there is always dandruff. You cannot miss the small, white flakes on your scalp. Although the condition is common, its treatment can be difficult. Here are some easy methods to treat dandruff.
Dandruff is a scalp condition caused by a fungus called Malassezia. This fungus feeds on sebum and the dead skin cells which arise naturally because of the formation of new skin. Generally, it starts around puberty and starts to decrease around 50.
The seriousness of dandruff can differ from person to person. Some cases may be less aggressive and easy to treat whereas others might need medical treatment. So, how to get rid of it? Read on these tips to know how to remove dandruff.
What Causes Dandruff
Dandruff is caused when a type of fungus known as Malassezia starts to grow on your scalp. However, this causes damage to the scalp and causes too much dryness. There is a type of dandruff in which your scalp starts producing more oil and as a result, dandruff starts sticking on your hair. Here are a few major causes of dandruff.
- Irregular hair washing and brushing
- Not using shampoo continuously
- Stress or any mental illness
- Parkinson’s disease
Now, that you are aware of the causes of dandruff, let us understand the methods to get rid of dandruff.
Simple Methods to Treat Dandruff
Foods that are rich in carbohydrates can build up glycogen in the skin. Few studies have proved that foods that cause acne can cause dandruff too. Dairy products and sugary foods can stimulate the sebaceous glands, which produces too much oil on the skin. So, unfortunately, you might have to reduce your intake of sugar and carbs if you want to get rid of your dandruff.
Wash your hair often
Dead skin cells and oils further pile up due to infrequent hair washing. Patients who have dandruff or who are prone to seborrheic dermatitis must wash their hair regularly to lessen the accumulation.
Baking soda is one of the simplest methods to get rid of dandruff. It can be used as a scrub to exfoliate the scalp, without causing any harm to it. Exfoliation is important to ensure there is no accumulation of flakes on the scalp that worsens dandruff. Baking soda with its anti-fungal and exfoliation properties soothes the scalp and lessens itching and redness also. You can mix baking soda and your shampoo and apply this mixture while washing your hair.
Some people avoid garlic due to its pungent smell, but its medicinal value is something that cannot be ignored. Garlic is used as an anti-fungal natural product. Its benefits have enthralled men for centuries.
Grind a clove or two garlic and after you mix it with water, apply it on your scalp. What to do with the smell? Well, you can mix ginger and little honey to the mixture before applying it.
Known for its several health benefits, coconut oil can also be used as a remedy for treating dandruff. Studies showed that coconut oil was useful as mineral oil in enhancing skin hydration. Researchers have found that coconut oil helps in treating eczema, a skin condition that causes dandruff.
All of us know the benefits of Aloe vera for the face, but very few know that it can be used for hair too. Aloe vera is beneficial in treating skin conditions like cold sores, psoriasis, and burns. It is also beneficial in treating dandruff.
The antifungal and antibacterial properties of Aloe Vera could help in treating dandruff. It can control fungal infections that cause hair loss from the scalp.
Tea tree oil
Historically, tea tree oil has been in use to treat ailments like psoriasis and acne. It has powerful anti-microbial and anti-inflammatory properties, which helps to alleviate symptoms of dandruff. In fact, as per a review, tea tree oil is effective at fighting the certain strain of fungus that can cause both dandruff and seborrheic dermatitis.
Another study examined the effects of tea tree oil on dandruff by treating 126 people regularly with a shampoo that contains either 5% tea tree oil or a placebo. By the end of the study, tea tree oil lessened the severity of symptoms by 41% and improved itchiness and greasiness. Remember that tea tree oil can irritate those who have sensitive skin. So, it is always better to dilute it by adding a few drops to a carrier oil like coconut oil before you apply it directly to the skin.
Reduce stress levels
Stress is believed to impact various aspects of health and well-being. It can influence ranging from chronic conditions to mental health conditions. While stress directly does not cause dandruff, but it can aggravate symptoms like itching and dryness. Sustaining high-stress levels in long-terms may suppress the activity of the immune system. A weakened immune system can lessen your body’s capability to fight off some of the fungal infections and skin conditions that cause dandruff.
A study of 82 people with seborrheic dermatitis, one of the major causes behind dandruff, showed that most of the dermatitis episodes were heralded by a stressful life event. To control stress levels, you must try some stress reduction methods, like yoga, meditation, aromatherapy, or deep breathing.
This is one of the common methods to treat dandruff. Crush two aspirins into a fine powder and mix it with your regular shampoo. Apply this mixture to your hair and wash after two to three minutes. The Salicylic Acid present in Aspirin helps to treat Dandruff efficiently.
A fresh bowl of yogurt too can help in treating an itchy scalp. The only thing that you need to do is shampoo your hair, apply yogurt, and leave it for 15 minutes. First, wash with water and then wash again with a small amount of shampoo. Yogurt contains a lot of friendly bacteria and therefore helps to prevent flaking of the scalp. You can also add black pepper to the yogurt as it also has anti-fungal properties.
This is the easiest method of all. Squeeze a full lemon and massage the juice on your scalp. Allow it to rest for 2 to 3 minutes and wash it off using a regular shampoo. You can even add lemon juice to a cup of water and use it to wash your hair. Use this regularly till dandruff disappears. The acidic character of the lemon helps in balancing the pH of your hair.
Apple Cider Vinegar
Apple Cider Vinegar is an effective natural remedy to treat dandruff. It is acidic which helps to remove dead skin cells on the scalp. It is also helpful in preventing the growth of fungus. Make a mixture by mixing 2 tablespoons of Apple Cider Vinegar in water. Wash your hair using your regular shampoo. Then pour this solution into your hair for the last rinse.
Although dandruff can be a serious issue, there are a lot of natural remedies available that can reduce symptoms and provide instant relief. Next time, when you see dry and itchy flakes on your scalp, try any of these methods to treat dandruff.