Hair Loss And Scalp Psoriasis
Scalp psoriasis doesnt cause hair loss as a direct result of the disease process. This means that although it is technically a listed symptom, the disease itself does not cause the hair to fall out.
If the psoriasis sufferer loses their hair, it is a direct result of scratching the scales, the harsh treatments required to treat psoriasis and the stress associated with psoriasis.
Hair loss associated with psoriasis is temporary. Hair typically grows back after the skin clears.
Does Scalp Psoriasis Cause Hair Loss
Basically, scalp psoriasis does not cause hair loss. However, scalp which is severely affected by psoriasis might not be able to provide adequate environment for proper hair growth. As a result, the hair might fall or experience slowing down growth. Psoriasis shows some effects to the scalp and its surrounding skin which affect the way hair grows, such as:
Red patches on the scalp, behind the neck, and hairline.
Psoriasis on scalp might cause red patches which can be over-dry and inflamed not only on the scalp, but on various areas around it. Inflammation which occurs with these red patches inhibit the hair to stop growing.
Dry scalp and flakes
Dry scalp also inhibits proper hair growth by causing damages to epidermis cells. When the cells in skin epidermis and dermis are damaged, the hair does not get enough nutrition to grow. Dry scalp might also cause the skin to crack and bleed. When blood vessels are damaged, there are no foods passed to the newly grown hair. As a result, it stops growing.
Scales which occurs similarly to dandruffs are ordinary in psoriasis outbreak. When you scratch the infected scalp, you might cause it to tear and results in scales. Hair roots which loosened up due to lack of nutrition during the outbreak thus fall. Thus, you might feel that your hair is getting thinner during the outbreak.
Can Scalp Psoriasis Cause Hair Loss
Common signs of psoriasis include red, patchy skin covered with scales that may bleed or itch, ridged nails, and swollen joints. There is also the risk of developing other health conditions such as psoriatic arthritis, heart disease, obesity, and diabetes. In the case of scalp psoriasis, a scaly, silvery buildup on the scalp can cause itching and discomfort. Scratching makes it worse and may result in temporary hair loss.
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Psoriasis And Hair Loss: Is It Connected
In our latest blog, Psoriasis Treatments: What Can Cause it and Can you Prevent It, we talked about the multiple forms of psoriasis including plaque, guttate, inverse, pustular and erythrodermic atopic dermatitis and how they can affect the elbows, knees, scalp and genitals.
We are frequently asked about the connection between psoriasis and hair loss, especially by patients suffering from scalp psoriasis.
Is Your Solution Part Of The Problem
It will probably take some trial and error to strike the perfect balance between soothing scalp psoriasis and nurturing your hair.
Medicated shampoos tend to be hard on your hair. Psoriasis can be a challenging skin condition, and the products designed to combat it often contain harsh ingredients. This is especially true for medicated shampoos. The skin on your scalp is thick, which means it requires aggressive solution.
Another culprit might be an over-the-counter product containing salicylic acid. This is an acid that breaks down scales but also causes breakage in your hair.
If you think your scalp psoriasis solution might be to blame for your hair loss, talk to your doctor about alternative options.
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Common Psoriasis Triggers & Causes
Cold and/or Dry Weather
Unfortunately, a psoriasis flare is stressful itself so that can prolong an outbreak as well.
Both types of weather can lead to dry skin, which exacerbates and triggers psoriasis. Sufferers tend to find that hot and sunny weather often helps to control their symptoms.
Some prescription drugs such as beta-blockers for high blood pressure and heart disease, lithium for bipolar disorder, anti-malaria medications, etc. can trigger psoriasis symptoms.
Differing studies argue whether smoking triggers psoriasis or just makes it worse and last longer but its definitely a factor.
A variety of medical conditions like tonsillitis, strep throat, HIV, etc. may trigger psoriasis flares.
For some people, something as simple as a bruise can trigger a psoriasis outbreak known as a Koebner phenomenon. Other flare-causing skin issues can be cuts, burns, bumps, vaccinations, tattoos, scrapes, severe sunburns, etc.
Heavy drinking can trigger a psoriasis flare.
Vitamin D Deficiency
A 2011 study indicates that Vitamin D can help immune system regulation concerning psoriasis so its believed that a deficiency can also trigger a flare-up.
Burning Scalp Hair Loss Treatment
The best way to relieve you of your burning scalp hair loss is to start by treating the underlying condition thats causing it. Over-the-counter topical treatments and shampoos are available for scalp psoriasis, but its always sensible to get a professional opinion and do your own research before trying any product of your own volition.
Keep in mind that some shampoos and conditioners that are specially formulated to treat hair conditions may contain active medicinal ingredients that can cause adverse negative reactions. Most doctors and dermatologists would suggest that you test these products on the back of your hand in small portions before using them on your hair. Let the cream or shampoo sit there for about a minute to gauge how it interacts with your skin. If nothing happens, then you can go ahead and use it on your scalp. But, if you feel any discomfort whatsoever, discontinue use and contact your doctor right away.
Once the underlying condition thats causing the tingling sensation and hair loss has been effectively treated, you might want to consider a hair restoration procedure to help restore some of the hair that youve lost.
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What Is Scalp Psoriasis When Can Scalp Psoriasis Begin
Psoriasis is an inflammatory disease of the skin that is estimated to affect about 2.2% of the adult population. In children, the onset of psoriasis can be before the age of one year but peaks around 5-8 years. Psoriasis produces scaly, itchingbumps on the skin. Some people may have a genetic predisposition to psoriasis. The genes affected seem to be involved with control of the immune system. Psoriasis appears as red scaling, slightly raised bumps that merge to form plaques. Psoriasis classically appears on the elbows and knees, but it can affect any part of the skin. The scalp is also characteristically affected in many people. Like psoriasis anywhere on the body, scalp plaques produce excess scale and can itch. Severe disease can cause a loss of scalp hair, which usually will return if the disease can be controlled. Scalp psoriasis somewhat difficult to treat when the scalp is covered with hair sufficient to act a barrier to the application of topical medications.
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What Does Scalp Psoriasis Look Like
With scalp psoriasis, too much skin cell growth can typically lead to chronic inflammation across the whole scalp. The excess cells can form psoriatic plaques, which often have a reddish-silver appearance that can flake, itch, crack and even bleed. Not fun at all! Sometimes the patches are sore and irritating, and sometimes, they’re not. Mild scalp psoriasis can, at times, go almost unnoticed. However, severe scalp psoriasis can last for a long time and be very noticeable.
During a psoriasis flare-up, the swollen edges of the thick plaques are usually well defined. And if the white, silvery scale gets knocked off, that’s when bleeding can occur. To protect the sensitive, thickened skin, it’s crucial you take care when brushing or combing the hair. It’s also essential you use a shampoo and conditioner that are appropriate for your scalp’s condition.
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How Is Seborrheic Dermatitis Treated
To effectively treat the unpleasant symptoms of this skin condition, the condition itself has to be treated. Treating hair loss, hair thinning and flaking skin without treating the source of these symptoms can exacerbate this condition and make the symptoms worse.
There are a number of available treatment options to cure seborrheic dermatitis, including over-the-counter antifungal medications, natural treatment methods, and prescription medications.
Scalp Psoriasis: Signs And Symptoms
Psoriasis can appear anywhere on the scalp. Sometimes a small patch develops, which can be easy to hide with hair. Scalp psoriasis also can cover the entire scalp. When psoriasis appears on the scalp, you may notice:
Reddish patches on the scalp. Some patches are barely noticeable. Patches also can be very noticeable, thick, and inflamed.
- Dandruff-like flaking and silvery-white scale. Scalp psoriasis can look a lot like dandruff. Many people who have scalp psoriasis see flaking. But there are differences between scalp psoriasis and dandruff. Unlike dandruff, scalp psoriasis causes a silvery sheen and dry scale on the scalp.
- Dry scalp. The scalp may be so dry that the skin cracks and bleeds.
- Itching. This is one of the most common symptoms. For some the itch is mild others have intense itching that can interfere with everyday life and cause sleepless nights.
- Bleeding. Because scalp psoriasis can be very itchy, almost everyone scratches. Scratching can make the scalp bleed. Scratching also tends to worsen the psoriasis. Scratching can make the patches larger and thicker. This is why dermatologists tell their patients, Try not to scratch your scalp.
- Burning sensation or soreness. The scalp can burn. It can feel extremely sore.
- Temporary hair loss. Scratching the scalp or using force to remove the scale can cause hair loss. Once the scalp psoriasis clears, hair usually regrows.
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Eczema Psoriasis And Hair Loss Are All Common Skin Conditions
Hair loss is something that most of us will experience at some point in our lives. There are numerous causes. And factors that contribute to hair loss, and the cause of your hair loss maybe completely different from that of others.
It can be difficult to determine what causes hair loss, some of the most common causes of hair loss include male pattern baldness, alopecia, ageing and pregnancy.
Certain skin conditions, such as eczema and psoriasis, can however cause hair loss.
Is Psoriasis Responsible For Hair Loss
Psoriasis can occur on any part of the skin as earlier stated. However, most people who have psoriasis have it on their scalp. Therefore, an itchy sensation in your scalp may be as a result of scalp psoriasis.
Scalp psoriasis causes so much discomfort, itching, and scratching. It may be mild or severe, and it can appear on any part of the scalp or even cover the whole scalp.
Scalp psoriasis may affect just the hairline, or it may go down to the neck or areas around the ears. This can affect confidence. Although hair loss is uncommon in psoriasis, it does occur.
Scalp psoriasis itself does not lead to hair loss or breakage. However, picking or scratching infected areas a lot may cause hair loss, but this is only temporary. As soon as treatment is administered to scalp psoriasis, lost hair can be regained within a few weeks.
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How Does Hair Grow
Hair begins to grow from its root which is located beneath the follicles. Hair cells is fed by the nutrients passed through the blood vessels. These nutrients enable proper hair growth, which will grow through the oil glands. Hair stops growing at certain points and may fall naturally when it is mature enough. However, there are some circumstances which inhibits hair growth and makes the scalp seem to have less hair. The risk factors include dandruff, dermatitis, psoriasis, and ringworm, which have the capability of infecting the scalp, a natural location for the hair to grow.
What Causes Hair Loss In Psoriasis
Temporary hair loss occurs as a result of scratching the scalp, because it loosens the plaques that cause the hair to fall out. When plaques flake-off, the hair can sometimes come out in tandem. Again, psoriasis does not cause hair loss, hair loss typically comes from aggressive brushing or scratching the scalp.
Special shampoos containing chemicals like salicylic acid are used to treat it and can also cause the hair to fall out. After treatment, when the skin clears, the hair grows back.
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What Causes Scalp Psoriasis Anyways
One study showed that researchers dont know the exact cause of scalp psoriasis. But, it appears to develop when your immune system sends particular signals to your skin cells. This makes your cells multiply too fast, leading to those scaly patches.
According to a research review, other factors that lead to psoriasis include:
- body weight
Some folks also claim that allergies are to blame, but theres not enough proof to back this up.
Scalp psoriasis symptoms can range from mild to severe. Common side effects include:
Psoriasis can indirectly cause hair loss. Giving in to scratch attacks on the reg or harsh treatments can make you lose some of your luscious locks. Thankfully, your hair should grow back after your skin clears up.
The AADA suggests trying these techniques to prevent hair loss:
- Avoid blow dryers or other hot tools.
- Use hair products that have menthol.
- Dont use products that contain irritants.
- Keep your scalp moisturized with a top-notch conditioner.
- Press an ice pack or cool towel on the inflamed parts of your scalp.
While theres currently no cure for psoriasis, there are a ton of over-the-counter treatments, medications, or home remedies that can help. The exact type of treatment depends on the severity of your symptoms.
How Can A Dermatologist Help With Hair Loss
Dermatologists are trained professionals in the field of skin, hair, and nail care and reproduction. They have the distinct ability to examine the condition of your scalp and use their expertise in addition with a series of medical tests to determine the cause of your burning scalp syndrome. If theres a medical reason behind the symptoms youre experiencing, then its better to have it diagnosed and treated as soon as possible to prevent it from getting worse.
In most cases, patients simply need to rethink their entire hair care routine starting with the products they use. Your dermatologist might recommend a less abrasive and more clinical product than what the leading store brands can offer. Certain prescription topical treatments can effectively resolve the issue and relieve you of your tingling, itchiness, and any other symptoms you may be experiencing.
Depending on the severity of your condition, other treatments may also be necessary.
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