One of every three people in America is affected with dandruff. It is a problem existing more than the number of arthritis patients! It is like an infection which recurs if not taken proper precautions. This problem starts normally at the stage of puberty and continues if left un-medicated or till when a person is tonsured. This article lists the basic causes of dandruff.
1. Dandruff is a medical condition, not a cosmetic condition as it is believed, caused by an overgrowth of an organism on the scalp. This organism is known as the ‘Pityrosporum ovale’ (a yeast-like fungal growth) or P.Ovale. This organism is present in everyone’s scalp; it is only because of its overgrowth that causes dandruff. A more serious form of dandruff is ‘seborrheic dermatitis’ as it effects both the scalp and skin- flaking, inflammation, redness and severe itching.
2. Why is the reason for the rapid increase of this organism? This can be due to hormonal imbalance, stress, diet, and climate and hereditary. P. ovale leads to hyper-proliferation as the epidermal cells increase because of yeast growth. This can be treated by antipityrosporal action; however there is scope for re-infection.
3. If a person is prone to hyper sensitive reactions, it causes dandruff as it leads to the tissues being damaged, thus inviting diseases. Hyper sensitivity is caused when the immune system over react to the antigens. Antigens are “a substance capable of inducing a specific immune response and reacting with the products of that response”. Even antibodies that are ‘immunoglobulin molecules’ react to antigens causing dandruff.
4. Daily factors like pollution, smoke and stress cause dandruff too, especially for those who have oily skin texture. Apart from diseases and other reactions, dandruff facilitates the growth of acne. You will notice that people having dandruffs have pimples on their foreheads. This is caused by the dandruff flakes falling on their foreheads.