We all experience hair fall sometime or the other. However, excessive hair loss may be a cause of concern. Seborrheic dermatitis is an inflammatory skin disorder predominantly associated with scalp and face. The subsequent hair loss associated with this skin condition can be traumatic especially for women.
Symptoms Of Seborrheic Dermatitis:
There are a number of symptoms associated with seborrheic dermatitis. Hair loss is just another uncommon symptom that results due to the abnormal secretion of sebum. Some of the symptoms are:
- The natural oil produced by the scalp and the malassezia fungus causes inflammation and irritation of the hair follicles, which restricts hair growth.
- Seborrheic dermatitis is found to affect some parts of the body, such as face, arms and scalp.
- Seborrheic dermatitis causes scaly, itchy, oily,and inflamed skin that can be painful to touch at times.
- Inflammation can also occur on the skin near the eyelashes, on the forehead, sides of the nose, upper back and chest as well.
- Other symptoms may also include crusty scaly patches on the scalp, itching, soreness, white or yellow scales etc.
Other Common Reasons For Hair Loss:
At times unexplained hair loss may be scary and worrying. People are generally prone to hair fall after a major surgery, pregnancy, extreme stress or drastic weight loss. This may also occur due to side effects of certain medications, such as antidepressants, non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs and beta-blockers.
Causes Of Seborrheic Dermatitis:
The causes of seborrheic dermatitis are not so clear. However, the basic reason may be areas of skin prone to heavy sebum production. Some factors responsible for seborrheic dermatitis are mentioned below:
- Some new born babies develop seborrheic dermatitis when androgens from the mother are passed to the baby across the placenta.
- One of the major reasons for seborrheic dermatitis hair loss is abnormal secretion of sebum from the sebaceous glands attached to the hair follicles. This consequently triggers the proliferation of the fungus called as malassezia furfur or the yeast pityrosporon ovale, causing inflammation and hair loss.
- Extreme sebum secretion, obesity, hormonal imbalance are a few other reasons for seborrheic dermatitis hair loss.
- Seborrheic dermatitis is common in individuals with immune system disorders, such as HIV/AIDS.
- Some other factors that may cause seborrheic dermatitis are stress, fatigue, dry weather conditions and neuro logical disorder, such as Parkinson’s disease.
- Sometimes hormonal fluctuations, such as during puberty may also trigger the onset of seborrheic dermatitis.
- In certain cases, an injury in the head or a stroke may also be responsible for causing seborrheic dermatitis.
- Not every individual who has seborrheic dermatitis experiences hair loss, in spite of the fact that their scalp is infected.
Treatment For Seborrheic Dermatitis Hair Loss:
The treatment ofseborrheic dermatitis is basically topical and includes shampoos, creams, lotions etc.
- The simplest way to control seborrheic dermatitis hair loss is by using the medicated shampoos that control scaling and skin proliferation.
- These antidandruff shampoos contain one of the ingredients as zinc pyrithione, selenium sulphide, ketoconazole, coal tar, salicylic acid or oil of cade.
- Several such shampoos may be recommended for using at intervals on different days as these might be responsible for its particular mode of action.
- Certain shampoos that are formulated with botanical extracts may be used for gentle cleansing and reducing the extent of itching and flaking.
- Some researchers also suggest the consumption of foods rich in omega 3 fatty acids, fish and fish oil supplements to control the symptoms of seborrheic dermatitis.
- Some dermatologists prescribe antibiotics for controlling the skin flora which consequently reduces the inflammation.
- The inflammation caused by seborrheic dermatitis may be treated by the use of topical corticosteroid creams or lotions. These creams act by controlling the body’s immune response.
- Some doctors may also prescribe Vitamin B complicated nutritional supplements.
Apart from the conventional treatment prescribed by dermatologists, there are several simple home remedies that aid to control seborrheic dermatitis. Some of them are:
- Consuming flaxseeds with drinking water.
- Intake of garlic cloves reduces the intensity of fungal infection due to its antiseptic properties.
- Application of aloe vera to reduce inflammation and control hair loss.
- Consuming fresh fruits and vegetables like apples, oranges and spinach that are rich in beta-carotene and antioxidants.
Hair loss due to seborrheic dermatitis is usually short term. When the skin inflammation reduces, the hair growth resumes to normal. Sufficient care has to be taken even after the symptoms subside, so that they do not appear again. It is recommended to keep away from direct sunlight. It is also advisable to use dehumidifiers, which reduce skin irritation and avoid hair loss.