Causes of Itchy Scalp

Several factors could be responsible for itchy scalp.

  1. Dry Scalp

When your scalp is dry, it can itch and flake, and when the skin breaks from cracking or scratching, bacteria can gain access, thereby leading to an infection. As a person gets older, they may experience dryness of the scalp. Also, it’s more common in dry climates. Those also affected by this condition are people who frequently wash their hair, this process strips out natural oils from the scalp, thereby leading to dryness.


Try washing your hair less often or using a milder shampoo. Your doctor may suggest medication when the dryness is caused by a correctable condition.

READ ALSO: Hair Loss Treatment for Women

  1. Scalp Psoriasis

Psoriasis causes a dry, itchy collection of skin cells that may crack and bleed on scratching. It causes your skin to flake, and you can have it on different parts of your body.


A special shampoo, oral medication, or topical cream may be recommended by your doctor to treat your scalp. You also get pills to help with inflammation and itching. Also, you can shine natural or artificial ultraviolet light on your skin to help clear up the painful patches.

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  1. Lice

Lice are tiny insects that live in your hair and feed on blood from your scalp. Lice are contagious and may sometimes be hard to get rid of.


Lice and the eggs they lay can be killed using special shampoos or rinses. Your doctor can prescribed one that is more effective. Your scalp might itch for a while, even after the lice are gone.

READ ALSO: Oatmeal Baths for Itchy Skin

  1. Dandruff

Dandruff are small pieces of flaked skin that falls off your scalp, leaving a sprinkling of white on your shoulders. Dandruff can be caused by an excessive dryness of the skin. It can be caused by a reaction to certain soaps or shampoos. Also, some illnesses like Parkinson’s disease or HIV can cause dandruff.


Treatment for dandruff will depend on its cause. If it is caused by a reaction to certain shampoos, you may simply switch products. You can try an over-the-counter dandruff shampoo or rinse to manage it. See your doctor if dandruff persists.

  1. Ringworm

Contrary to its name, ringworm isn’t caused by a worm, but caused by a fungus that can infect your skin or scalp and cause itchy, scaly, bald patches on your head. It’s contagious and it’s common in toddlers and children.


Oral medications will be prescribed by your doctor. Also, rinses, special shampoo, or creams can be prescribed by your doctor to use on your head.

READ ALSO: Home Remedies for Ringworm

  1. Alopecia Areata

This condition occurs when your immune system, which normally protects your body from intruders like viruses and bacteria, mistakenly attacks your hair follicles. This causes hair loss and patches.


There’s no cure for alopecia areata. However, your hair might grow back on its own. Medications for hair growth work for some people, but they may not help cover patches. You can wear hats and scarves to protect exposed skin from direct sun.

  1. Seborrheic Dermatitis

This condition causes scaly patches of skin and stubborn dandruff. It may also affect oily areas of your body, like your upper chest, back, and face. It can be itchy, but it’s not severe.


It’s a long-term condition, but symptoms can be treated with creams, drugs, and special shampoos prescribed by your doctor.

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  1. Cradle Cap

This is a kind of seborrheic dermatitis that typically affects babies. It isn’t painful or itchy like the adult version.


Cradle cap usually resolves up on its own by washing it daily with a mild shampoo to loosen it. If it’s still there after a few weeks, see your baby’s doctor.

  1. Folliculitis

This is a common skin condition that happens when hair follicles (tiny holes where your hair grows) becomes irritated, usually after a bacterial or fungal infection. Small red or white-headed bumps often appear around the follicles. It can spread and turn into crusty sores that don’t heal fast.


Folliculitis is treated with medicated creams, shampoos or light therapy. Minor surgery may be required in severe cases.



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