The 411 on... Itchy, Dry Scalp

The key to having healthy hair is a healthy scalp. But it is amazing how many of us don't know how to maintain and treat our scalp. I've only found out recently that many of the techniques and products I use to employ in dealing with my scalp, did nothing! A common problem many people experience with there scalp is itchiness and dryness. In this blog post I hope to explain causes of dry, itchy scalp and what you can do to treat it...

Dry scalp is when the skin of the scalp becomes tight and itchy and tiny flakes of dead skin are showered by combing and brushing. Not to be confused with dandruff which is when large flakes (dead skin cells) shed from the scalp (I will post dandruff at a later date).

What are the causes of itchy, dry scalp?
There a number of reasons why you may get dry scalp problems, they include;
- Allergic reaction,
- Tight braids or extensions,
- Poor diet; excessive consumption of sugar, fat and/or starch,
- Stress,
- Harsh shampoos,
- Cold weather and dry indoor heat,
- Build up/accumulation of hair products on the scalp,
- Heat; washing hair with hot water, drying hair too closely with blow dryer

How do you deal with dry scalp?
- By using shampoo for dry hair that uses oils as opposed to dimethicone
- Using sulfate-free shampoo or a mild shampoo; harsh ingredient can strip the scalp and hair of natural essential oils
- Using products with natural ingredients or adding natural ingredients such as shea butter, jojoba oil, emu oil, thyme etc.
- Massaging scalp when shampooing/co-washing; massaging removes flakes as well as promoting healthy blood flow for hair growth
- Wearing hats will help combat the effects of cold weather
- Co-wash and shampoo more frequently to avoid build up.
- Turning down the temperature; hot water and blow drying can also strip hair of essential oils.

If you have tried everything and the problem still persists, consult a proffesional, competent hair stylist, a doctor or maybe even a trichologist.

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