Dandruff is a flaking of the skin. The flakes are yellow or white. Dandruff may make your scalp feel itchy. It usually starts after puberty, and is more common in men. Dandruff is usually a symptom of seborrheic dermatitis, or seborrhea. It is a skin condition that can also cause redness and irritation of the skin.
Most of the time, using a dandruff shampoo can help control your dandruff. If that does not work, contact your health care provider.
There is a type of seborrheic dermatitis that babies can get. It is called cradle cap. It usually lasts a few months, and then goes away on its own. Besides the scalp, it can sometimes affect other parts of the body, such as the eyelids, armpits, groin, and ears. Normally, washing your baby's hair every day with a mild shampoo and gently rubbing their scalp with your fingers or a soft brush can help. For severe cases, your health care provider may give you a prescription shampoo or cream to use.
Other problems that can affect the scalp include:
- Cradle Cap (Mayo Foundation for Medical Education and Research)
- Kerion (VisualDX)
- Ringworm, Scalp (Tinea Capitis) (VisualDX)
- Scalp Psoriasis vs. Seborrheic Dermatitis: What's the Difference? (Mayo Foundation for Medical Education and Research) Also in Spanish
- Seborrheic Dermatitis (VisualDX)
- Seborrheic Dermatitis and Rosacea (National Rosacea Society)
- Seborrheic Dermatitis Overview (American Academy of Dermatology)
- ClinicalTrials.gov: Dermatitis, Seborrheic (National Institutes of Health)
Journal Articles References and abstracts from MEDLINE/PubMed (National Library of Medicine)
- Article: Impact of a health educational interventional program on reducing the head...
- Article: Malassezia virulence factors and their role in dermatological disorders.
- Article: Advocacy for a shared physician/patient approach for the management of acne,...
- Dandruff, Cradle Cap, and Other Scalp Conditions -- see more articles
- Pediatric Seborrheic Dermatitis (VisualDX)