Need Help to Cure Dry Itchy Scalp

Updated on February 22, 2008
A.J. asks from Rushville, OH
38 answers

Hello, I seem to have a dry itchy scalp-I don't know if it's just dry skin or dandruff. Is there a difference? I have tried just about every dandruff shampoo out there and it doesn't seem to help. Are there any home remedies or anything that anyone else has found to help. Thanks

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So What Happened?

Thanks ladies-wow what a wonderful response you guys are wonderful and so helpful. I am planning on trying several of the techniques and hopefully this will get better. You guys are so wonderful. I can't wait until I have another problem so that you can help me figure it out. Wow, it's like I have an entire team of Mommy's to help me out!!! Thanks!!!

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C.G.

answers from Cleveland on

A.,
I also get dry itchy scalp in the wintertime and I use Scalpicin. You can get it at any drug store. Hope this works for you!!

1 mom found this helpful

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T.N.

answers from Indianapolis on

neutragena t gel - works great for me!

1 mom found this helpful
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M.S.

answers from Dayton on

1.Do not over wash your scalp and use a mild shampoo, rinsing very well, with the coolest water you can stand, on a regular basis. Washing the scalp daily is not necessary BUT you may use conditioner daily in the shower to freshen your scalp.
2.Let your hair air dry as much as possible
3.Do not scratch your head as you can infect you scalp with the normal fungus that may be under your nails.
4.Dilute 1 part vinegar with 5 parts warm water and rinse your entire scalp repeatedly over a sink using a large cup.
Repeat once or twice a week and see your primary doctor if this is not helpful.

1 mom found this helpful
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H.H.

answers from Cincinnati on

Hi, A. --

Depending on where you live, the water may be the culprit. Where I live, the hardness level is insanely high, and before we got our water softener, sometimes the water would actually sting my skin. The softener has made all the difference in the world for us.

Nevertheless, though, I also have had horrible bouts with dry, itchy scalp. The best thing I ever found was called Nizoral. I think it comes in different strengths. The formulation I used was strong. It was blue and smelled wonderful, completely opposite from some of the tar-based shampoos I'd tried for the problem. In fact, I miss using it because I loved that scent so much!

So, I'd whole-heartedly recommend Nizoral!!

Good luck!
H.

1 mom found this helpful
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D.I.

answers from South Bend on

If you have not tried it yet try selsun salon. The selsun salon worked well and got rid of my son's cradle crap. I am a married mom of almost 12 yrs. with 3 boys ages 10,7 and 4.
D.

1 mom found this helpful
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D.P.

answers from Lafayette on

A.,
I am a hairdresser with the same problem for over 20 years and have kept it in control by using Matrix Actrol shampoo. I used to have sores all over my scalp that I couldn't keep from scratching. I tried the Tea Tree shampoos mentioned earlier and all the over the counter stuff. My dermatologist mixed this horrible concoction up with oil and aspirin and I had to put it on my scalp each night. None of it worked until I tried the Actrol Shampoo. I keep it in stock in my salon and I have many clients that use it and swear by it. It doesn't smell like normal dandruff shampoos and you can use it everyday if you need to. Wash your hair when it is dirty. I wash mine every other day and put the shampoo on and leave it on for 1-2 minutes. Once my scalp was under control I just wash as usual and don't need to let it stay on. My daughter also has the same problem and she keeps trying other shampoos but comes back everytime. The problem will be worse in the winter but this shampoo can be used all year around without any negative effects on your hair. You can also use it on color treated/highlighted hair without problems. I have clients that came to me with sores on their scalps and now they have no issues. You can find Matrix products in salons but you might need to ask your hairdresser to get some for you. I buy the bottle wholesale at $7 so it shouldn't cost you very much. You use about the size of a quarter/half dollar so it goes a long way. If you use this and don't switch you should be able to tell a huge difference in a week.

Good luck!

1 mom found this helpful
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B.C.

answers from Lima on

Paul Mitchell's Tea Tree Oil Shampoo and Conditioner (Green Bottle) works well. I have very sensitive skin, it flakes up when I use shampoos with perfumes, when I'm under stress, and even during the dry winter weather, when humidity is real low. You can find this shampoo at a salon!

1 mom found this helpful
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D.C.

answers from Cincinnati on

Vinegarhelps dry ichy scalp

1 mom found this helpful
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T.M.

answers from Indianapolis on

Have you tried 'Tea Tree' from Paul Mitchell?

1 mom found this helpful
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K.E.

answers from Lafayette on

Try Arbonne Shampoo with Tea Tree Oil. It is a natural remedy for dry scalp.

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S.P.

answers from Indianapolis on

I read in the paper last week that Milk of Magnesia is good for dry itchy scalp.
Apply it to your scalp, let sit for a while and rinse.
Sorry I don't remember the specific directions but it would be worth a try.
You might try rinsing your hair with vinegar also.
But I would try the milk of Magnesia first several times and see if that helps.
Good luck.

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L.P.

answers from Steubenville on

I'm a mother of two boys. My oldest son has the same problem with scerosis and the best thing that i found for the dry scalp is tplus gell. you can find it at almost all stores. I would give this a try it really does work. I hope that this was helpful.

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A.O.

answers from Indianapolis on

I am a consultant with The Body Shop at Home. We have a ginger scalp care shampoo that I love. I have tried lots of dandruff shampoos and like this one the best. Our products are nature inspired and wonderful. If you want to get a hold of me I would love to bring you a sample of it to try. You can contact me at [email protected]____.com, or on my website at www.thebodyshopathome.com/web/aoaks. If you like it you could get it for free if you are interested in hosting a party.

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J.S.

answers from Terre Haute on

Hello. I too just started having these problems. I've tried the dandruff shampoo as well. Nothing seemed to work. I've looked up on this one web site awhile back and came across TEA TREE OIL. But now they make this new shampoo that has Tea Tree Oil init as well. You can try that or you can talk to your doctor. I also had started taking my brush with me into the shower and when I've got the conditioner in my hair, I start brushing gently through and rinsing while I do that. I was told that if you start massaging your scalp it will losen the dead skin. This has helped me. But most importantly talk to your doctor or try to locate a doctor that does hair. I believe you can go through a dermatologist.

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A.C.

answers from Dayton on

OMG! I have this same exact problem! I have tried every dandruff shampoo under the sun and nothing works. I wake up in the middle of the night because my head itches so badly. My hairdresser has told me that I do not have dandruff and I have never noticed any flaking or anything. I am dying to know what will help too. I am getting close to just going to a dermatologist because I don't know what else to do. I'm so happy that it's not just me!

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S.W.

answers from Cincinnati on

Try Neutragena T/Gel shampoo. It's the most effective one I've found.

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A.G.

answers from Bloomington on

I have the same problem. It's probably just dry scalp. Dandruff has a very distinct odor. And is also cakey & yellowish in color. Do you blow dry? If so, try letting your hair air dry about 3/4 of the way, then finish w/ blow dryer. Also, do you use a humidifier? This happens to me every winter. It's just the dryness of the air. Try using a humidifier. One more thing, don't use too hot water when showering, this also dries the skin and scalp. Hope this helps.

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M.L.

answers from Cleveland on

Hi A.,

My daughter has the same problem and she's had it since she was a baby. She has to condition everytime she washes her hair and I do oil treatments at least once a month. What I do is put baby oil in her hair and let it soak overnight(use a plastic bag or shower cap). At least for 2 hours if your in a hurry. We wash it out the next day(it takes a couple of washes). This leaves her hair shiny and her scalp nice and moist. Selsun Blue is about the only dandruff shampoo that helped but the oil treatments seem to work better and its good for the hair to.

Good Luck,

M.

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L.S.

answers from Cincinnati on

My son has the same problem, with a flaky scalp. I always thought it was dandruff and we've tried every dandruff shampoo out there to no avail. What we finally found that helps him is Paul Mitchell Tea Tree shampoo and Mark Anthony conditioner. I forget which conditioner it is specifically, but it is in the orange bottle and you can buy at Walgreens or Target type stores. When he uses this combination, he doesn't scratch at his head and the flakiness disappears. Good Luck!!

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S.D.

answers from Indianapolis on

I like neutragena t-gel. If that doesn't work, talk toyour doc and get a prescription for Nizoral, it's great!

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S.F.

answers from Fort Wayne on

There are several dandruff shampoos that are effective. Head and Shoulders, Selsum Blue, and probably the strongest I know of is T-Gel. It needs to be used several times a week. If you do not see any difference in a couple weeks, then talk to your family doctor. There are prescription shampoos that can be prescribed as well as oinments that can be applied to the scalp.

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M.J.

answers from Cincinnati on

Probably not something you want to hear but have you been tested for ringworm. This can cause the dry itchiness as well. My daughter had a dry itchy scalp in one specific area forever. I bought special $40 shampoo and conditioner recommended by my hairdresser thinking it was a dry itchy scalp but no help. It just wouldn't go away. So I took her to the pediatrician and they took some dandruff samples (or what we thought was dandruff). It turns out it was ringworm. It was not easy to detect because it was hidden in the hair. You actually have to take medication orally prescribed by your doctor in order to get rid of it. There really isn't much you can put on it to ease the itching. We had to take other measures such as new comb and brush, not sharing those items with siblings etc. This is the worst case scenario but worth checking out. I hope this is not the problem but you never know.

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D.K.

answers from Indianapolis on

First & foremost....increase your OMEGA FATTY ACIDS and stay hydrated. You should see a big difference.

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D.C.

answers from Columbus on

Hi A.,
My husband has psorasis in his scalp and he uses Arbonne's tea tree oil shampoo. He used to use head and shoulders and pert, but we are trying to be as "green" as possible so they don't fit that build.
He has used our shampoo for almost two years and says it works. I'd be happy to send you a sample of the product to try. It's a botanically based product just like all of Arbonne's products. It's pure, safe, and beneficial.

Let me know if I can help you out.
Sincerely, D.
[email protected]____.com or ###-###-####

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D.M.

answers from Toledo on

OK, here's one I didn't see listed. It's cheap and has no odor, not greasy, etc. Aloe Vera Gel. It can be purchased at most stores, i.e., Meijers. I buy the clear one. My stepmother is an elderly Japanese woman (love her to pieces) who is into healthy, herbal alternatives. She taught me that if you rub aloe vera gel into your scalp at night it will open up the hair follicles allowing them to breath. My husband uses it every night, because it relieves his itchy scalp. I use it when I notice some dry flaking, and it only takes a few times for my scalp to clear. We rub it into our scalp before bedtime. It doesn't make the hair sticky.

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C.P.

answers from Indianapolis on

You should see a dermatologist. You may have a kind of dermatitus that will will require an Rx shampoo to get rid of it.

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C.L.

answers from Indianapolis on

I have the same issue. I use Aveda - beautify oil on my scalp 1 times per week and leave on overnight. I wash it out in the morning. It smells wonderful and works for me. It is expensive but you use only small amounts and last me over a year. I even use a little on my little man's hair- a drop after a shower to condition his hair.

hope it helps...

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L.S.

answers from Columbus on

Hi, A.! I have the same problem and I have two home remedies. 1) Drink mangosteen juice (XanGo) (1-2 oz three times a day)--usually the source of skin conditions is coming from the inside out and the compounds in this juice have helped me so much! 2) Take a cotton ball and put the juice directly on your scalp. The company is coming out with a skin care product soon so we don't have to stick juice in our hair--ha-ha--but for now this truly works!

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C.S.

answers from Lima on

Just wanted to tell you that my husband has/had a REALLY bad dry scalp, with big flakes and all. Selsum blue has worked for him...not sure if you tried that, but wanted to tell you what worked for him!!!

L.M.

answers from Columbus on

Hi A.,
I had the same thing and finally went to see a dermatologist. She gave me some prescription shampoo that finally did the trick. I had tried all the over the counter stuff too. The itching was driving me crazy!
The other bad news is that she told me this was a chronic condition and she's right, if I don't use that shampoo at least once a week, the itching comes back.
I never had any problem like this before. It just came up in the past 4-6 months. Probably another new 'feature' of getting older and pregnancy/post partum hormones :)
Hope that helps!
L. Mercer
[email protected]____.com

Have it all.....Family. Success. Your own business in the new and exploding digital scrapbooking market. More details at www.PictureYourLife.com

Mom of 4 with a full time job LOVING LIFE! See how I do it at......www.HowWeCanHaveItAll.com

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C.D.

answers from Indianapolis on

Hi A.- I am a mom of 3 girls also! I had oily hair my whole life until I had my 3rd child. My scalp now is so dry, itchy and burns at times. My doctor said hormones and stress plays a role in this problem. I also did some research online and some people think a lack of oil in your diet also contributes. I try and wash my hair every other day with Neutrogena T/Sal shampoo in warm water(not hot) and it has gotten the problem under control. My 2nd grader is now getting scalp problems and we use that shampoo on her too. Hope your girls don't have it. Good Luck.

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D.M.

answers from Mansfield on

you might want to try some baby oil or you might want to try some olive oil and regular mayo its healthy for your hair

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N.M.

answers from South Bend on

I use Scalpacin and it works immediantly and very well.

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A.Z.

answers from Cincinnati on

It is the same thing. I went to a dermatologist and they gave me some liquid medication to apply when it flares up and it goes away almost overnight.

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M.S.

answers from Cincinnati on

hi, i know the feeling. i had to go to the dermatologist to get meds. but mine comes on when i get stressed out. not from the weather. i tried all of the danduff shampoos also

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A.F.

answers from Cleveland on

I have the same issue in winter. It may not be your shampoo. I found for myself that it was the hairspray products.

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S.T.

answers from Dayton on

I have the same problem with one of my boys, they actually thought he had lice because he was scratching so much. I have tried everything cant find anything either. Please let me know if you find something that works.

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A.Q.

answers from Cincinnati on

Hi A., Melaleuca has an awesome line of hair care products.One of their shampoos is designed for brittle hair and itchy scalp.It's an all natural product that soothes and clarifies a dry scalp, removes buildup and wahes away flakes.It is a terrific product! Let me know if you need [email protected][email protected]____.com A. J.

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