WORDS BY PATRICIA MC CROSSAN
I’ve suffered from dry scalp and scalp psoriasis since my twenties. At times it has disappeared entirely, only to appear again with a vengeance. I can generally pinpoint the cause of the severe bouts down to excessive stress or diet and too much sugar in my diet; chocolate and wine are all primary triggers. Psoriasis is considered an auto-immune condition and happens when your immune system sends faulty signals and skin cells grow too quickly; these then pile up in red patches, often with silvery scales. At least half the people with psoriasis have it on their scalp.
The scalp is a balanced and sensitive ecosystem and therefore responds to minor changes. I recommend using a scalp exfoliator once or twice weekly in cases where you are trying to clear built-up scalp debris. Look for a natural product like Kevin Murphy Scalp Spa Wash. Use small, circular motions with your fingers to gently massage the exfoliant into your scalp; leave for a couple of minutes before rinsing thoroughly. Diet also has a significant role to play in scalp and hair health. Biotin, known as Vitamin B7, is one of the many B-vitamins that can improve hair health. Some of the best sources of biotin include legumes, egg yolks, nuts, seeds, mushrooms, avocados and sweet potatoes. You can up your Biotin levels by taking a capsule or as a B-Complex, where you will also benefit from the rest of the B-vitamins. Turmeric is another excellent supplement; I have found that its healing and anti-inflammatory properties will help with scalp irritation.
TIPS FOR A HEALTHY SCALP
- Use a scalp scrub once a week.
- Use a gentle, natural shampoo specially developed to treat dry scalp and psoriasis.
- Avoid dietary excesses and processed foods high in sugar, salt, and sulphates.
- Eat a healthy diet with lots of leafy veg and healthy oils.
- Avoid coal tar shampoos and ones with salicylic acid and steroids.
- These might be a quick fix, but shouldn’t be a long term option.
- Avoid products that contain alcohols or fragrances.
- Treat yourself to a scalp massage and a hair mask every week.
Kevin Murphy Scalp.Spa Wash €31.00 kevinmurphystore.ie
Elemis Frangipani Monoi Hair and Scalp Mask €43,00, Spirit One Spa, The Galmont Hotel
La Roche-Posay Kerium Intensive Shampoo 125Ml €15.75 University Late Night Pharmacy
Sukin Haircare Sensitive Micellar Shampoo €12.00 Evergreen
Image @dicasdemulher via Pinterest