Getting to Know Seborrheic Dermatitis

Seborrheic Dermatitis is an extremely common skin condition caused in the areas having an extremely tropical climate. These are usually confused with diseases like psoriasis and eczema. Although the incidence of Seborrheic Dermatitis is high on the scalp, it can appear on any part of the body. It is mainly seen as a developing red and itchy scar like ridge present on the scalp. The main cardinal feature includes the appearance of flaky scales. This is usually called as the stubborn dandruff disease.

What are the Causes of Seborrheic Dermatitis?

Although the exact cause of the disease has not been found out yet, scientists have proven the linkage of a certain fungus, malaassezia that can be the main effector of the infection. The fungus mentioned above was isolated from the oil secretions (seborrheic secretions) of the skin. 

Along with the fungus, there are many conditions due to which the production of this disease can be increased:

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1. Excessive stress

Stress is a condition which can produce a detrimental effect in the majority of conditions. Along with producing extreme manifestations such as heart failure and kidney failure, it can cause the body to produce excessive oil and hence result in this skin condition.

2. Your genetic makeup

Genes constitute the entire framework of the body. These provide a blueprint for the upcoming infections of the body. This factor is not in your hand. It solely depends on what you receive from your parents.

3. Prevalence of Cold and Dry weather

A cold and dry weather can cause the skin to produce flakes. These flakes can corrode the scalp layer and hence cause further infection of seborrheic dermatitis.

Who is at a Risk of Developing this Disease?

1. Age:

Newborns and adults in the age range 40—60 years are most likely to receive the infection. This is due to the decreased immunity at the level of the scalp.

2. Sex:

It was evaluated in a research that men are more likely to get seborrheic dermatitis than females. This is due to the genetic makeup of a male.

3. Type of Skin:

There are primarily two skin types: Oily and dry. Oily skin types have reported a larger incidence of seborrheic dermatitis.

What are the Symptoms?

The appearance of a stubborn layer of dandruff is the main cardinal feature of the entire disease. The scales are often yellow or brown in color.

The flakes are extremely itchy. This initiates a reflex arc which leads to the rubbing of the skin of the scalp.

The excessive rubbing leads to the appearance of a red discoloration of the affected area.

Some patients show the classical signs of itching and burning too. The flakes which fall off can be moist or oily in nature.

Although seborrheic dermatitis can be healed on its own, certain remedies can be applied in order to get relief from this skin condition.  The treatment, depending on its efficacy, can either last for days or either for an entire lifetime!

I am sure this article provided you with an insight to the disease in question!


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Janet Fudge

Janet Fudge writes on general health topics for She holds a post-graduate diploma in Public Health with a major in epidemiology. During the outbreak of COVID-19, Janet actively volunteered in vaccination drives throughout the state of Iowa. She lives in Iowa with her husband and two children.