How can I get rid of scabs on my scalp?
I'm 28 years old, female, and a busy mom with not a lot of time to go to the doctor for dermatology appointments. I get scabs on my scalp sometimes that flake off and never seem to heal. I keep my hair clean but I do sweat a lot and have oily hair tendancies. I also have a lot of contact allergies like I cannot touch sulfa or mold without breaking out in a rash. I am taking birth control and effexor XR. What hair care treatment should I use to help with this problem?
It may be that you simply have something called seborrheic dermatitis. This is an inflammatory condition of oil-rich areas of the skin like the scalp, hairline, eyebrows, and facial creases. It often results in thickened skin that can be reddened and itchy and can lead to scaling areas that look like scabs. Although all the causes of seborrheic dermatitis are not known, it may be related in part to fungus living on the surface of the skin. The best first step in treating seborrheic dermatitis is good skin and hair hygiene. An anti-dandruff shampoo containing selenium sulfide or similar agent (there are many available at your pharmacy) is a good first approach, as this will reduce inflammation and soften and loosen the scaling areas. Avoid picking at the areas, as this could lead to worsening inflammation or infection. If this does not work, see your doctor who can confirm the diagnosis and may prescribe other medications, including antifungal or steroid creams. If it is not seborrheic dermatitis, it may be folliculitis, or infections of the hair shafts by bacteria. This can also be confirmed by your doctor on physical examination and can usually be treated with topical antibacterial medications.
This answer is for general informational purposes only and is not a substitute for professional medical advice.
If you think you may have a medical emergency, call your doctor or (in the United States) 911 immediately. Always seek the advice of your doctor before starting or changing treatment. Medical professionals who provide responses to health-related questions are intended third party beneficiaries with certain rights under Zocdoc’s Terms of Service.
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