32 answers

Head Itches from Allergies

Hi moms!

This is almost embarrassing to talk about but my head itches so bad I want to scrub it with a Brillo Pad. I know the first thing most moms will go with is lice and that's not the issue. It's bad allergy time for me right now. I've always had a moderate amount of itching all over when this time hits but this is out of control this year. I'm thinking that it's worse since I've had my daughter in May. Lots of things that used to effect my body mildly are worse now after pregnancy so I'm just assuming this is one of them. What I'm asking all you wonder-moms out there is if any one has any ideas, besides allergy medication which I'm already living on, that might help sooth the itch? Last night it was so bad that I woke up and rubbed Aveeno lotion into my scalp. Helped a little but now I have a grease pit on my head. I try washing my hair as much as I can. I have curly hair so I'm trying not to ruin it by washing everyday. And I also use Aveda hair products so I don't think it's any of them bothering me. Besides, I've already tried to switch to something else just in case it was a product I was reacting to. Didn't work. I can tell this is just simply the same allergies that are making my nose run. But it's driving me nuts!! Has anyone else had this problem and what have you tried?

Thanks ahead of time!!!

--------EDIT--------
I also am itching all over my body. It's not eczema or anything like that. I don't have any redness, bumps or rashes. I've already asked my allergy doctor about it and he's looked and said that it was simply seasonal allergies making me itch. But that was in the past when it wasn't this bad. My body still itches about the same but my head is just soooo much worse and my regular allergy medications just aren't cutting it.

So far I've received some really great advice. I'm still reading so if you have more let me know. Thanks again!!

2 moms found this helpful

What can I do next?

So What Happened?™

Thanks moms! I went out and bought the Scalpicin and tried that and love it! Made the itch go away long enough for my allergy medicine to kick in. I'm also going to switch back to using the Head and Shoulders which I've done periodically in the past. I'm intrigued about the Listerine idea. That one I'm going to have to try out sometime. As a little correction, some of you thought I washed my hair daily, and I appreciate your advice but I really only wash my hair about 3 times a week due to my curly hair. I guess we got our wires crossed on that one. Anyways, thanks again for all the great ideas! You are all rock stars!

Featured Answers

i know this sounds weird, but worth a try. i am allergic to everything and live on allergy med also. i am allergic to soy (rare but happens). what's weird is i can eat soy but not use it in any body products. i have to be very careful to read labels on EVERYTHING i buy. basically the only products i can use are the expensive dept store makeups and the plain jane dove/ivory body washes (only certain ones still). i can never use aveeno b/c the base ingredient is soy. i itch like crazy if there is soy in it - whether shampoo/conditioner, soap, lotion etc. you may want to try eliminating that and see if it helps. otherwise, ask allergist if you can combine allergy meds. i take singulair and zyrtec for allergies and it makes my ezcema go away. good luck!

1 mom found this helpful

Jen,

You don't mention whether you have bumps where you itch, but it is possible that you have a mild psoriasis too. I have this, and now is the worst time of the year for me. The dryness of artificial heat aggrivates it terribly. Neutrogena T-Gel is the most soothing thing that I've tried. I too, use Aveda products, and when this is not acting up they work fine for me. There are also topical medications that help the itching. The problem with the medications is that they all seem to be in an oily or petroleum base. I use them at night, (placing it directly on the itchy spots, rather than rubbing all over) and wash my hair in the morning.

I would definitely give some of the products that I see mentioned here a try. I did not know about the hydrocortisone in Scalpicin, and do plan to try that. Best wishes to you!

1 mom found this helpful

Hi, I have similar problem. I use the Equate version of lubriderm on my body and it makes a load of difference. Have you tried Equate version of head and shoulders for dry scalp? You have to use the name brand of the conditioner because there is no generic.
My head becomes allgergic to what I use quickly so a friend suggested that I alternate different shampoos each time I wash my hair. So, I will use head and shoulders on Mon. and Dove on Tues. It seems to help. I don't seem to react as quickly as I did before. Hope this helps!

More Answers

Yes.. my head will get red bumps and will itch like crazy. I went to the store and bought some extra strenght scalpicin. Its hydrocortisone with something else that makes your head almost turn cold and it feels oh so soothing. I just use a mild shampoo (nothing too scented) and when i get out squirt it all over my head. Works wonders!

2 moms found this helpful

I have VERY sensitive skin and that includes my scalp! Check your shampoos, conditioners and soaps for sodium lauryl sulfates. It's a known skin irritant that is added so things "suds up" - apparently in the States, suds equal cleanliness. Target has a body wash called Jack that is SLS free. There is also a brand of hair care called Jason that is SLS free. The shampoo is pricey, but frankly I've found it worth every cent. Since you have curly hair (as do I), you might also try Garnier's leave in conditioner for curly hair. I've found my scalp doesn't react badly to it, which means I don't have to risk ruining my hair by washing it too much.

2 moms found this helpful

I started having the exact same problem a few years ago with an itchy head. I have sinus allergies, but went into the allergist to get tested because my head itching was driving me crazy. It turns out that I am allergic to milk, which was something completely new. You might want to get tested. The only way that I can stop the itching is to remove dairy from my diet completely.

1 mom found this helpful

Try going to People's Pharmacy, Whole Foods or the Apothecary Shop (near Duval and Mopac). Let them know your dilemna. It's very possible one of them will be able to help you.

A little about me: I am an about to be grandmother and fostered seven children.

1 mom found this helpful

Jen,

You don't mention whether you have bumps where you itch, but it is possible that you have a mild psoriasis too. I have this, and now is the worst time of the year for me. The dryness of artificial heat aggrivates it terribly. Neutrogena T-Gel is the most soothing thing that I've tried. I too, use Aveda products, and when this is not acting up they work fine for me. There are also topical medications that help the itching. The problem with the medications is that they all seem to be in an oily or petroleum base. I use them at night, (placing it directly on the itchy spots, rather than rubbing all over) and wash my hair in the morning.

I would definitely give some of the products that I see mentioned here a try. I did not know about the hydrocortisone in Scalpicin, and do plan to try that. Best wishes to you!

1 mom found this helpful

HI Jen,

Tee Tree oil hair product work for itchy scalp. I have one made by Nature's miracle. You can get it at any health food store, Sun Harvest, Whole Foods, etc. It may help! I have curly hair too and feel your pain. You may be able to alternate washing with shampoo and just washing with conditioner. It's very soothing to scrub your scalp with the tee tree conditioner.

Good luck! Yes the allergies are awful this year!

1 mom found this helpful

Check out cosmeticsdatabase.com. Enter the products you are using and scroll through to check for allergies, toxins, etc. It is very enlightening. Consider switching laundry detergent to free and clear that are phosphate-free and switch hair products after you surf the above website.
Good Luck!

1 mom found this helpful

i know this sounds weird, but worth a try. i am allergic to everything and live on allergy med also. i am allergic to soy (rare but happens). what's weird is i can eat soy but not use it in any body products. i have to be very careful to read labels on EVERYTHING i buy. basically the only products i can use are the expensive dept store makeups and the plain jane dove/ivory body washes (only certain ones still). i can never use aveeno b/c the base ingredient is soy. i itch like crazy if there is soy in it - whether shampoo/conditioner, soap, lotion etc. you may want to try eliminating that and see if it helps. otherwise, ask allergist if you can combine allergy meds. i take singulair and zyrtec for allergies and it makes my ezcema go away. good luck!

1 mom found this helpful

This hasn't been mentioned, so I'll just throw it out as a possibility. I spent much of my life thinking that I just had dry skin, which caused all my itching. As it turns out, my skin is sensitive to parabens (methylparaben, propylparaben, butylparaben....). These are preservatives that are used in just about everything, from makeup to shampoo to lotion. Most people don't seem to be bothered by them, but some people develop contact dermatitis from too much use (according to the dermatologist I visited). Apparently, they have a similar chemical structure to poison ivy (I never have had poison ivy, though). Anyway, you might check the ingredients in your shampoo, conditioner, lotion, etc..... My problem was mostly with my lotion, so now I use nothing but cetaphil, which is paraben-free. Don't know if this is an issue for you, but it's one possibility to consider. Good luck!

1 mom found this helpful

Hi Jen,
I haven't read all your responses so I'll put in my 2 cents' worth. First of all, I can relate as I seem to be a bit itchy too. That's because it's really dry out in addition to the heavy Cedar Fever and the goo that is in the air.
For these things I use a couple quick combinations that help me not only topically, but internally. These are: 1) ingesting and also rubbing on my skin and hair virgin coconut oil. I also cook with it as well as with virgin olive oil. I might also recommend that you start eating some walnuts, since they have essential fatty acids and oils in them that help.
2) Try to increase your intake of water daily since this helps to hydrate and replenish your skin's water content and plumps up your pores.
3) Exfoliate your skin with sea salt compounds (try SoapRano's exfoliating salts) while in the shower. do this all over your body. Then when you get out, pat yourself damp, not dry. Follow up immediately with coconut oil.
4) When showering, use warm water, not hot as hot water will dry you out a little more readily. If you have to do a shot of hot water to be warm enough, follow that up with a cool shot of water just before you finish your shower to close your pores. This is also good for your scalp after shampooing and conditioning.
5) You say that you shampoo frequently due to the grease on your hair. You might try a hot oil treatment on your hair at least 1ce per week then shampoo it out. In between shampoos which could be as much as 3 days, you can let the sebum build up, since it coats the scalp. This will depend on how comfortable it is to you. As long as your hair is not greasy or smelly between shampoos, it might be good practice for the short term until your scalp gets normalized.
6) Aveda products (and many other products) may contain perfumes that may over time, irritate your scalp. If so (or you suspect they do), try another organic product that does not have much perfume and see if that helps. I have found that occasionally, I become more sensitive to shampoos and/or conditioners that have perfume in them. The other thing you might try is to reduce the amount of shampoo you use as you might have a little more residue, which can also irritate and cause your scalp to flake. I would not recommend using anti-dandruff shampoos since they just create a vicious cycle and do not rid you of dandruff, contrary to what they'd like you to believe...

For some quick relief, after shampooing and conditioning, you could use some Listerine or Mint based mouthwash on your hair, then immediately rinse it out. I can't tell you how refreshing that is, although I know it probably sounds wierd.

For remedial use, coconut oil on your hands and body daily works well and it's not greasy or sticky -- it soaks right in, which I like. Premise here is that if you can eat it, then it's going to be good for you to put on your body since your skin is the largest organ.

Good luck to you, Jen!

Pantene products make my head itch bad! It may just be whatever product you are using.

i would go see a dermatologist or an allergist to help, all that itching is crazy!! you could take benadryl if it gets too bad.

Mountain Cedar pollen is at it's worse this year... It is so bad that they suggest staying inside as much as possible and if you have to go out that whne you get back you strip down, take a shower and wash the clothes you were wearing.

So...I suggest wearing a simple scarf on your head when you go out to help keep the pollen off of it, and following the other instructions about showering and laundry...IT will mean a lot more laundry and showers for you during this season, but you have to decide how uncomfortable you want to live with being...

Good Luck... ;-)

I rinse my head with plain listerine, then rinse out. I used to scratch my scalp all the time until I started this during high pollen times.
I don't know about the rest of you. I know my mother used to put me in a "Tide bath," but the formula's most likely been changed. You could try a bath with 1/4 cup baking soda dissolved. I've heard oatmeal baths are also soothing. Good luck.

Leonor Greyl Hair and skin products are wonderful. I have problems with severe dry skin and dry scalp and get itchy flaky patches that scratch off - so I can relate to your problems - and washing too often can only aggravate it and dry it out. The Magnolia Oil smells wonderful and is very soothing, although it is an oil and I only used it on my scalp at night. It's a little pricey, but worth it. Here is a link to the website:

http://www.leonorgreyl.com/en/detail_produit.php

Also, there is a stylist in Spring who does scalp treatments - his name is Neil Dennerstein with Wavelink Cuts at the Powder Room. http://www.yellowpages.com/info-LMS57227271/Wavelink-Cuts...

Tell him S. sent you! I think he sells Leonor Greyl products, too.

Have you had your thyroid checked? It does cause dry skin & bad to severe itching. I know I've had the same issue as you after pregnancy & developing hypothyroidism. My scalp itches SO bad, it looks like I have dandruff which I don't. My whole body itches a lot most of the time that my hubby teases me saying "got fleas?" I started using the Herbal Essences moisturizing shampoo & conditioner. They stopped selling my favorite of theirs, Citrus Lift so I've changed to the Body Envy line of theirs, the Hello Hydration. It's blue. It's the second best I've come across to alleviate the itching. Now I only itch half the time but when I use the conditioner, it really seams to help. I've notice, however, with those shampoos, you need a lot less than what you'd need normally so it may take a few times to get the right amount. Using too much will cause oily hair/scalp in a lot of cases. Winter also drys out the skin so for the rest of your bodily itches, try using hand and/or body cream...NOT lotion, it's different. Palmers, GoldBond are what we use. We used to use Dermacil but apparantly it's no longer available. Vasiline intensive care lotion seems to work well but Palmers is my fave since I can't tolerate the perfumey scents most lotions have plus the perfumes used in them make the itching worse. Just remember to use natural type hand/body creams that are fragrance free. Creams are thicker, absorb into the skin better & lasts longer than lotions which are thinner. Apply after showering and/or shaving too. Good luck.

Hi Jen,
how miserable you must be. How very uncomfortable and embarrising.
If you have allergies have you thought of detoxing your home and ridding your home of harmful chemicals that only agravate the allergies? There is a product that is totally chemical free and has been proven to reduce or even remove the allergie symptoms totally- not expensive- cheaper than other products on the market and 100% guaranteed . PM me so we can talk privately and I will share the link with you to see if there is something youcan use there. Not trying to sell you anything- just giving you the information. My phone # is ###-###-#### CST and my e mail is
____@____.com
Good luck and
blessings

I have a milder case of the same problem. I use Tea Tree (spelling) shampoo, from a beauty supply shop. It works wonder for me. My hair dresser also told me to try a small amount of sea breeze on one place on my scalp to see it that worked I did and it did, however it has lots of alcohol in it. Good luck.

I have the same problems! Aveeno lotion works well on my body for the most part. It doesn't take it all away, but temporary relief. Nizoral shampoo every other day can help. So can Tea Tree Oil Shampoo, my husband likes the Paul Mitchell one. Make sure you're drinking plenty of fluids, especially water as the itching can be double due to dry skin for the winter. Don't use a bar soap. Find a moisturizing body wash; there are plenty to choose from. Welcome to mountain cedar air!

Hi, I have similar problem. I use the Equate version of lubriderm on my body and it makes a load of difference. Have you tried Equate version of head and shoulders for dry scalp? You have to use the name brand of the conditioner because there is no generic.
My head becomes allgergic to what I use quickly so a friend suggested that I alternate different shampoos each time I wash my hair. So, I will use head and shoulders on Mon. and Dove on Tues. It seems to help. I don't seem to react as quickly as I did before. Hope this helps!

Here is what I use Head and SHoulders for Dry Scalp. It helps with the itchy dry scalp and controls flaking. ( walmart had made a generic version of the shampoo but not the conditioner.)
I have used denorex and it didn't work.
For your body EUCERIN makes a CALMING CREME lotion. I use it on my son who has ezcema and it stops his itching.
Good luck.

Hi Jen,
About 6 years ago, I developed allergies to everything under the sun and that included the same problem with an itchy scalp. It was out of the blue and I have pretty much been dependant on allergy medicine daily. The allergy medicine, however, did not take care of my scalp problem. I tried so many shampoos from the cheap stuff to the expensive stuff. I have found that a shampoo containing melaleuca oil (strongest form of tea tree oi) in it and it has been fantastic for me. The oil is soothing and healing. I have to wash with it every day. I can't skip a day or my scalp flares up again. As far as itching all over, that only happened to me when I was taking pain medication at the birth of my twins. The rash lasted three weeks after I quit taking the medication that was causing it. Itching can drive you crazy, can't it! I have made a huge effort to reduce the chemicals that I have in my home (chemicals from body care products, cleaners, laundry care items...) and I have seen a huge change in my daily allergies. Now I only take my allergy medicines occasionally for short periods of time. This has made a huge difference for me. I didn't realize how much of my home environment--me trying to keep my house clean--was actually irritating me. I look back to when all of my allergies just hit me out of the blue I was living in a dorm where we cleaned every day...with cleaners full of irritants. I feel like I have become more educated on these types of things. I had no idea that normal cleaners I used everyday and everyone uses were that irritating. Anyway, I don't know if this will be the case for you, but I'm sure you would welcome any suggestions in order to find some relief. (It took two weeks of use with the shampoo I talked about earlier for my scalp to completely heal and I haven't had a problem since.) Feel free to email me if you have other questions.
A.
____@____.com

Here's a site with a lot of helpful information...
http://www.longnaturalhealth.com/discussion2.asp?T=114
Hope this helps,
A. :~D
www.eatingwellbeingwell.net

My daughter has had this same problem with an itchy scalp for about a year now- she just turned 26. I never thought of it as allergy related, but I bet it is. She sometimes uses the head and Shoulders for itchy- or sensitive scalp. She has gone to moisture rich TResemme now, but I noticed her scratching her head again last night. So, I do not have all the answers,but I am going to try to get her to use the Head and Shoulders again. J. K.

Maybe you are washing your hair to much. I only wash mine about three times a week. I have extremely dry hair. I have very dry skin also. You are right this allergy season has been the worst for me. My grandmother use to use some medicine on the hair asile called Scalpicin. It has directions on it for how to use it and it really helped her. Good Luck! I know how frustrating it is to be scratching all the time and have people looking at you.

Oatmeal seems to work for me...baths or I don't see why you couldn't rub it in your scalp without the oily mess?

The neutrogena T Gel works well. You have to leave it in for a couple of minutes. Walmart and HEB carry generic versions of it that work just as well.

I have this problem too (although mine is ALL over itching!) and when it happens I need to remind myself t only take cold showers and sleep without sheets or clothes. Mine is exacerbated by any kind of heat. I guess when I have bad allergies I tend to gravitate towards warmer showers to help with stuffiness and although it helps short term I am miserable for hours after. I don't know if that will help, but it's worth a try.

I only read some of your responses. I also have used Neutrogena T-Gel and it works really well.

As far as your body itching- avoid foods you are even mildly allergic to during this season. I will get the same thing if I over-do it on wheat. A gluten-free diet also helps me. It's really hard to follow, but it does help.

Good luck!

I had some results when I used Listerine and dabbed it on my head with a cotton puff. The coolness was great, and the itching stopped until next soaking. Hope that helps...

It may sound less hygenic than you would normally wish for yourself, but my understanding is the more you wash your hair the dryer it becomes. The natural oils in your hair are helpful to keeping your hair healthy but also should help with the dry scalp. I would suggest washing your hair less and then using head and shoulders shampoo. It sounds like you have exima (I know this isn't spelled correctly). Have you asked your doctor if there is a solution you can apply directly to your scalp? not the oral meds.

My daughter has terrible itchy skin from allergies. Her pedi recommended using dandruff shampoo and it really helps. Get the stuff with the most medicine in it (Like Selsin blue or the Nutragena one).

Required Fields

Our records show that we already have a Mamapedia or Mamasource account created for you under the email address you entered.

Please enter your Mamapedia or Mamasource password to continue signing in.

Required Fields

, you’re almost done...

Since this is the first time you are logging in to Mamapedia with Facebook Connect, please provide the following information so you can participate in the Mamapedia community.

As a member, you’ll receive optional email newsletters and community updates sent to you from Mamapedia, and your email address will never be shared with third parties.

By clicking "Continue to Mamapedia", I agree to the Mamapedia Terms & Conditions and Privacy Policy.