Itchy scalp hair loss is usually very unpleasant for those affected. The causes of itching and associated hair loss can be many and varied. Various natural remedies can relieve the itching in the short term. However, if the itching persists for a longer time, it is advisable to have the cause clarified by a dermatologist.
Common but harmless causes of scalp itching
Chronic irritation of the scalp by certain ingredients of shampoos, hair gel or hair colors is often the cause of itchy scalp. The itching is then usually accompanied by the formation of dandruff, caused by a too dry scalp. But also too hot blow-drying of the hair, congested heat under caps and helmets, or a braid that is braided too tightly, in which the hair pulls excessively on the scalp, smoking, an unhealthy diet or taking medication can be responsible for an itchy scalp with hair loss. Last but not least, stress at work and at home is often the cause of itchy scalp.
More serious causes of itchy scalp hair loss
In addition to the usually harmless and easily remedied causes of itchy scalp, serious causes can also cause itching and hair loss. Possible causes are infections with bacteria, a skin fungus (dermatomycosis) or psoriasis. And even infestation of the scalp with lice, mites or fleas, which can cause itching through bites and stings, is not uncommon. Various diseases such as diabetes mellitus, thyroid disorders, kidney disease or shingles are also possible more serious causes of itchy scalp.
When should a dermatologist be consulted?
An appointment with a dermatologist is generally recommended if the itching is associated with pain, redness, blistering, weeping of the itchy skin areas or incrustations. Even if the itching does not subside after about 4 weeks despite treatment with household remedies or if the symptoms worsen, a doctor should be consulted.
Can an itchy and dry scalp cause or aggravate hair loss?
In most cases, hair loss is not a consequence of dry scalp, but a symptom of another problem. Most hair loss problems are actually genetically determined. Neurodermatitis and psoriasis are often the reason why dry skin and hair loss occur together. A common systemic disease is hypothyroidism or hypothyroidism. In this disease, the hair usually thins out on the entire head area as long as the hypofunction remains undetected and untreated. This can indeed be a relatively long period of time. Hypothyroidism is accompanied by accompanying symptoms such as rapid exhaustion, a noticeably deeper voice and a slower heartbeat.
Furthermore, hair loss in combination with a dry scalp can also be caused by an acute or chronic iron deficiency. Women are usually more affected by this than men. The reason lies in monthly blood losses and thus also possible iron deficiencies. The iron deficiency can also occur in vegans or pregnant women. It is therefore advisable to consult a dermatologist first if hair loss and conspicuously dry scalp are combined.
This doctor should check your levels for thyroid gland and iron. Neurodermatitis and psoriasis are so obvious that they are much more likely to be detected and treated.
Less obvious is that dry scalp can be promoted by washing the hair too often and using the wrong shampoo.
Chemotherapy can also dry out the scalp. However, hair loss happens usually due to the strong chemotherapeutic drugs. The drugs used attack cells that divide very quickly. These include the cells of the hair follicles. Consequently, the hair falls out a few weeks after the treatment.
Why an itchy scalp can lead to hair loss
A dry and itchy scalp can no longer hold the moisture in the skin. If it comes in combination of a chronic lack of liquid (the supply of drinking water) the organism switches to an economy programme.
It supplies all important body regions and processes with vital substances, but leaves the less important ones unsupplied or supplies them insufficiently.
Not sufficiently nourished hair roots then wither away. However, the process can be reversed with a changed diet, significantly more drinking water, a milder shampoo and moisturising skin care for the scalp.
If the hair loss is caused differently and cannot be prevented by proper care, the only remaining option is cosmetic treatment.
Home remedies against an irritated scalp
If the scalp itches due to hair loss, various household remedies can provide short-term relief. Knowing the cause of the itchy scalp is also important when using household remedies, as this is the only way to avoid the actual disturbing factor in the long term. A sufficient supply of vitamins C and E, a healthy diet, avoiding stress and drinking a lot also helps to combat itching.
Especially if you are affected by itchy scalp hair loss, you should make sure to use only a mild, pH-neutral shampoo without added perfume for hair washing. Suitable are mild baby shampoos, home-made shampoos or, for example, Biotin shampoo with valuable vitamin B5 and millet extract. Shampoos against dandruff should be avoided as they additionally dry out hair and scalp. For the same reasons, avoid washing your hair too often or blow drying your hair with hot air.
For itchy scalp hair loss, treatment with commercial oils, as found in almost every household, has proven effective. Suitable are olive oil, avocado oil, tea tree oil or rosemary oil. For the treatment, a small amount of the oil is applied to the scalp in the evening and gently massaged in. The oils stimulate the blood circulation and pamper the scalp with a soothing massage. Only the next morning the oil is washed out again with the regular hair wash. The oil treatment is usually only necessary once a week.
Hair conditioners with apple cider vinegar
Hair conditioners with a mixture of 1 to 2 tablespoons of apple cider vinegar per litre of water have also proven to be effective in treating itchy scalp hair loss. The lukewarm mixture is applied after hair washing and not rinsed out again. Alternatively, nettle water (self-made or from the pharmacy) can also be used.
For acutely itchy scalp hair loss, simple household remedies such as apple cider vinegar or olive oil promise quick improvement. However, they are not suitable for long-term treatment of hair loss. If the itching on the scalp lasts longer, you should consult a doctor in any case.
An itchy scalp is unpleasant and can be a sign that something is wrong with your scalp. Dandruff, dermatophytosis or product residues can be the cause of itchy scalp hair loss.
Most people suffer from itchy scalp at some point. The causes can be very different. A scalp disorder caused by seborrheic eczema occurs particularly with oily scalps, while contact dermatitis most often affects a sensitive and dry scalp. Another reason for an itchy scalp could also be head lice.