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Why Do You Get Dandruff and Does This Effect Hair Loss?

If you’re losing your hair, there’s a good chance that you’re looking at everything to see what can be done. All sorts of things have been linked with hair loss, including smoking and drinking, but what about naturally occurring things, like dandruff? Does that have an effect on the rate of hair loss? It’s a perfectly valid question, so let’s take a look.

Before anything else, it’s crucial to understand what dandruff is, exactly. Dandruff is an exceptionally common condition in both men and woman, and is familiar thanks to an itchy scalp and dry, white flakes falling from the hair. In fact, it’s estimated that around half of all people in Western Europe and North America suffer from dandruff.

The condition is caused by the natural process of skin cell renewal. Your skin cells are constantly renewing themselves, and it’s the same with the skin on your head. As new cells are created, the old (now dead) cells re pushed to the surface and then out of the scalp, resulting in the tiny skin flakes that dandruff sufferers are so familiar with.

When it comes to a link with baldness, however, there’s no evidence pointing to a causal link. It’s clear why one might become convinced there was a link, however. Because of just how common dandruff is in men and women and how common hair loss is, seeing them together on your head could lead you to thinking that the two are related.

It all comes down to the fact that dandruff is a skin condition, whilst balding is about your hair. The two might interact, but there’s no link between the skin on top of your head and what’s going on underneath it, so don’t worry too much about that.

What can prove to be an issue for some men is excessive scratching of the head if you’re suffering from dandruff and thinning hair. That scratching could speed up the process of hair loss, which if the follicles on your head are already largely closed, could result in site specific baldness. In a worst case scenario, if your scratching is severe enough (as it can be with people who have scalp psoriasis) you could develop traction alopecia.

The best course of action to take is to treat your dandruff condition separately from your hair loss. Invest in a good quality dandruff shampoo and alter your grooming regime to ensure that you wash your hair with it at least four times a week. Alongside that, consult with a hair loss professional to see what kind of treatments will be suitable for your particular hair loss situation.


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