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Seborrhoeic dermatitis or seborrhea is an inflammatory skin condition that mostly affects the areas of the body rich in sebum gland, such as the scalp, face and the body. It usually causes flaky and itchy skin, which could also change color and become red.

There are certain things, known to be helpful if you have this skin disorder.

Shampoo your hair every day. Specialists recommend using shampoos with zinc pyrithione, salycilic acid, Ciclopirox, ketoconazole or selenium sulfide, to treat your hair.Use mild soaps for your body and always remember to rinse it thoroughly off your body.To avoid irritation of the skin, wear cotton clothes only. Also, it might help to shave the beard and mustache, if you have any. Sometimes, just shaving off the facial hair eases the condition.Try not to scratch the affected area. To make sure you don’t scratch it in the sleep, trim your nails and wear gloves while sleeping. You might also want to try some anti-itching preparations. An over the counter (OTC, non-prescription) cream with minimum 1% of Hydrocortisone may be helpful. Some also recommend using OTC anti-fungal creams, especially clotrimazole (Lotrimin).


Doctors still have no cure for this skin disorder. In most of the cases, conventional medicine can deal with the symptoms but usually the condition comes back.

Cradle Cap

This condition is known as infantile seborrhoeic dermatitis (or crusta lactea) and occurs on the scalp of newborn babies. It doesn’t require any treatment usually. Doctors recommend shampooing baby’s hair every day and brushing the scales with a soft brush. If this doesn’t help, you could apply couple of drops of some mineral oil and then brush off. Rarely, seborrhoeic dermatitis in babies becomes so severe that it needs antifungal preparations to treat the condition.

Scalp Dermatitis

There are shampoos available that are used to treat this condition. Usually, they contain zinc pyrithione, salicylic acid, tar, ketoconazoles, or selenium sulfides. Specialists advise to use different shampoo every week (with different active component). Use these shampoos for three weeks and then start again.

Non-Scalp Dermatitis

To treat sebborhoeic dermatitis on other parts of the body, doctors use corticosteroid or anti-fungal preparations and ketoconazole and desonide creams. If everything fails to ease the symptoms, doctors might suggest immune modulators.

Alternative Treatments

Sometimes, it might be worth trying to find out if the use of complex of B vitamins, essential fatty acids or local application of zinc or lithium helps.

Homeopathic remedies are also recommended. Be aware that if the condition is chronic, it may require some time to be completely healed. Some herbs and salts are the treatments often recommended to treat seborrhoeic dermatitis. You could use natrium or kalium muriaticum, kalium sulphate, cleavers (Galium aperine) or red clover (Trifolium pretense) to manage this disorder.

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