Dandruff is a chronic condition characterised by a dry scalp that often exfoliates in small flakes. Though it sometimes carries a social stigma, it is actually the body's natural process of shedding dead skin cells, and just happens to be more noticeable than the same process in other areas. Nevertheless, it is possible to cure bad dandruff and to prevent an flaky, itchy scalp with a few easy remedies.
Stay hydrated. The first step to curing bad dandruff is so obvious that it's often overlooked. Dandruff is dry skin, and one sure cause of dry skin is general dehydration. This can be caused by insufficient intake of water, or excess intake of diuretics such as caffeine or alcohol. Avoiding dehydration by drinking lots of water is the simplest way to prevent or reverse chronic dry scalp.
Treat yourself with hot oil. The sebaceous glands just under the surface of the skin are responsible for producing the natural oil that keeps hair and scalp from drying out. Sometimes, dandruff can be caused a deficiency in this oil or by washing it away. The closest natural replacement is jojoba oil, which can be massaged directly on the scalp as a hot oil treatment. If this is not available, coconut oil or baby oil can be applied to the scalp and left in place overnight.
Brush your hair and scalp. Another common cause of dandruff is insufficient circulation to the skin cells of the scalp. Massaging the scalp stimulates blood flow, and a good way to do that is to regularly brush the hair and scalp. This also helps remove existing dry skin flakes while preventing new ones from forming.
Try dandruff shampoo. A doctor will probably recommend trying an over-the-counter dandruff shampoo. There are different types of dandruff shampoo that treat the condition in various ways, and some can be effective for different individuals. It's a good idea to try several a few weeks at a time until you get good results.
Make a natural remedy. Lemon juice is considered an excellent natural remedy for dandruff and dry skin. It can be applied directly to the scalp alone or in a mixture with oil or honey. Rinse after 15 minutes to prevent an overpowering odour.
Use a jojoba or lemon to treat bad dandruff in the short term, and dandruff shampoo and regular hydration to prevent recurrence.
Dandruff is not the only condition that produces a flaky or scaly scalp. If conditions persist, consult with a doctor about possible psoriasis or dermatitis.