Scalp eczema is a form characterized by itchiness, redness, flaking and formation of oily, scale-like patches on the scalp. Various factors can contribute to the formation of eczema including climate, genetics, stress, overall health and overgrowth or sensitivity to yeast in the scalp.
It is important to note that the immune system might be involved in some manner as the condition is more common among those with HIV. Scalp eczema affects individuals of all ages and races and can spread to other parts of the body.
Measures in managing scalp eczema
- Among children with scalp eczema, shampoo the child with a baby shampoo and loosen any scales using a soft-bristled brush. The doctor might suggest a topical antifungal cream or even a corticosteroid for serious cases or if the eczema radiates to other body parts.
- Loosen and get rid of any scales by dabbing warmed olive oil on the scalp. Leave in place for an hour and rinse using a mild shampoo. Brush away any leftover scales using a bristled brush.
- Avoid taking lengthy, hot baths or showers since these can dry the skin, intensify the itchiness and worsen the eczema. It is also advisable to avoid using harsh shampoos, hair products and soaps that contain fragrances or alcohol.
- A dandruff shampoo can be used to clear the scalp eczema among adults especially in cases that do not respond to frequent shampooing using regular products. Medicated shampoos that contain salicylic acid or tar are ideal for most cases. Those that contain ketoconazole are beneficial for cases that do not improve after several weeks of shampooing with regular, medicated shampoos. Tar shampoos might cause discoloration of gray, blonde or white hair.
- Make sure that the skin is cool to prevent itchiness and irritation. It is recommended to limit engaging in activities that results to warmth and sweat. Taking a shower with lukewarm water right after physical activity and applying moisturizing ointment on itchy, dry or irritated areas can soothe the skin. The oil-based varieties are effective in managing dry skin and eczema than the water-based variants.
- For severe inflammation, corticosteroid medications or topical immune-modifying drugs are given.
- Oral antibiotics can be given to manage scalp infections which are likely to occur among children with eczema.
- Phototherapy can also be used for dealing with persistent cases of scalp eczema.