There is not a one size fits all solution for itchy scalp. Most people think scalp problems are as simple as oil balance, however, when one has chronic illness, there could be so many reasons for itchy scalp. In my experience, my scalp becomes really itchy right before it falls out in that spot so I try to be very proactive in resolving the skin flare and hopefully saving my hair.
I'll start with the simple solution and suggest some remedies you may not have considered.
Maybe your scalp is oily- Try a different shampoo. Many people have had shampoo suggested because the ingredients or the development process is supposed to be better for hair health, the environment, animals, or even your specific illness. What good are any of those things if you are experiencing scalp discomfort or even hair loss? One of the not-so-pretty truths about chronic illness is that sometimes, we have to use products that are socially unpopular if that's all we can afford of if that's all that works for us. Avoiding products could mean avoiding a solution to a serious problem.
Oily scalp continued- Do you have mystery bumps similar to pimples or severely oily hair? Try your astringent/freshener that you use on your face. Part your hair in fourths and hold the sections with bands or clips then part the sections into smaller sections and use a cotton ball to dab the skin with the oil balancer.
Maybe your scalp is dry- Use a scalp moisturizer. Most ethnicities do not moisturize their hair even less believe in moisturizing their scalp. If you know your scalp is dry, it's time to try creme moisturizers or natural oil combinations and applying them directly your scalp. (I have different natural oil mixture suggestions on this Bath & Body page.) Part your hair in fourths and hold the sections with bands or clips then part the sections into smaller sections and use your fingers or a spray bottle to apply the oils. Massage your scalp with your finger tips. If you have oily hair but a dry scalp, be careful to only use a small amount of oil because whatever doesn't absorb into your skin will get in your hair.
Maybe your scalp is affected by your illness in an unexpected way- Here are some unconventional suggestions to try if you think your scalp discomfort is more than just oiliness or dryness:
Vitamin A&D Ointment- Many people are familiar with Vitamin A&D Ointment because it is used for diaper rash. It can heal skin that is irritated for any number of reasons. As with other scalp treatments, part your hair in fourths and hold the sections with bands or clips then part the sections into smaller sections and use your fingers to rub the ointment into your scalp. Massage all over your scalp with your finger tips. My only word of caution is that this will obviously make your scalp oily, and perhaps your hair too oily depending on how much you use.
Antifungal Cream- Some people have higher about of fungus in their bodies. If you have frequent yeast infections, MRSA or other fungal infections, this is worth a try. Part your hair in fourths and hold the sections with bands or clips then part the sections into smaller sections and use your fingers to rub the ointment into your scalp. Massage your scalp with your finger tips.
Hydrocortisone- Maybe the itch is eczema or some other skin irritation that causes itch and the only thing that will work is hydrocortisone; so try it. Like all of the other suggestions, part your hair in fourths and hold the sections with bands or clips then part the sections into smaller sections and use your fingers to rub the ointment into your scalp. Massage your scalp with your finger tips to make sure you get it all over.
*I'm not a health care professional or a esthetician. My suggestions are based off of my experience with chronic illness and skin flares and thing I have tried that have worked.
About a year ago, I decided to cut all my hair off and try wearing it natural. I have been trying to perfect my hair care ever since.
A few weeks ago, I discovered max hydration methods. I know many may have heard of them; they have been around for quite a while. There are so many different mixtures of oils with varying benefits. This is what I decided to use:
I use the LCO method. The initials stand for Liquid, Cream, Oil.
Liquid- this is simple; water.
Cream- I use leave-in conditioner with shea butter in it.
Oil- In a spray bottle, I mix ¼ cup of water, 2 tablespoons of aloe vera juice, 2 tablespoons of glycerin, 1 tablespoon of olive oil, 1 tablespoon of coconut oil, 1 tablespoon of jojoba. (I did this proportion twice because my spray bottle could hold it) (this mixture lasted about 3 weeks)
Mornings: I either wet my hair in the shower or, if I’m not showering in the morning, I use a spray bottle to wet my hair. Then I put about a quarter to a half dollar sized amount of leave-in conditioner in my hand, I rub my hands together then I rub the conditioner into my hair. I am sure to put conditioner at the root in the spots where my hair grows slower then I rub it everywhere else. I let that sit in my hair for a few minutes. For the final step, I shake the oil mixture, part my hair with my hand in several places, and spray the oil mixture all over my head. I use my fingers to massage everything into my scalp and hair.
Evenings: The trick to max hydration is that you want to keep your hair hydrated (not feeling dry) all the time. So at night, at least an hour before I go to bed, I repeat steps C and O. I don’t do the L step because my hair will be wet enough and I don’t want to soak my pillow. I sleep with my hair down and unwrapped with a satin pillowcase. You may want to use a satin hair wrap or to do some protective style.
My results: Since I’ve been doing this, my hair is moist and unmated in the morning. I’ve previously had very moist matted hair when I woke up. My hair is definitely healthier looking all day long. I love it!
For some people, their hair will hold this moisture for a couple days; maybe in time mine will too. In that case, I suggest quickly figuring out how long it takes for your hair to get dehydrated and repeating the LCO before that happens. Example: If your hair becomes dry on the third morning, do the LCO the second night.
**When discussing hair care, it’s important to acknowledge that all hair types are not the same. The treatments I’m doing are best for coarse, curly hair. They are definitely not for straight or thin hair. I have thick, curly, African American hair but I have often suggested moisturizing to some white friends with curly hair.
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