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How to Deal With Dandruff This Winter?

Dr. Sadaf Amin

2 min read

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Dandruff is problematic enough during the summer, but the dry cold winter weather, and the generous use of heaters make this common scalp condition a force to be reckoned with. January has come to an end, but the bitter winter is far from over. Here’s what dermatologists recommend for your luscious locks (and shoulders) from turning into a snowy field for the rest of the winter season:

1-Become a Label Hunter:

If you didn’t read shampoo labels before, it’s high time you start reading them now. Look for shampoos with Zinc Pyrithione, which helps restore the natural fungal balance of dry, flaky scalps.

Also look for shampoos with a maximum number of vitamins and inflammation-reducing ingredients like cucumber and mint.

2-Be Consistent:

Anti-dandruff shampoos are not one-time miracle cures. Like all remedies, you need to shampoo regularly for long-lasting effects. That being said, use no more than 2-3 times a week, and always work it into a lather with the balls of your fingers, not nails, for 1 minute before rinsing.

3-Shower Smart:

Resist the temptation to wash your hair every time you shower, as this will only further dry your already winter-dry scalp. Also, opt for cool, or at least lukewarm water over scalding hot to avoid scalp damage. Always rinse thoroughly to ensure proper cleansing of shampoo and any hair products.

4-Change Your Towel:

Forego soft, fluffy towels for pure cotton ones. While they may feel soft to the touch, fuzzy towels generally have a rough texture that irritates the scalp and contributes towards frizzy hair. Take your anti-dandruff hair care one step further by wiping dry your shower-wet hair with a cotton t-shirt instead.

5-Avoid Styling with Alcohol:

Asking to avoid hair products and heat styling is a pointless exercise. So instead, forego hair sprays and perfumes containing alcohol to keep your scalp from further drying out. Also, try to air dry as much as possible, as blow-dryers tend to remove much-needed moisture from the scalp.

6-Limit The Oil:

Oiling can help get rid of the persistent itch and dryness that come with dandruff. However, the old adage of ‘too much of a good thing being bad’ also applies here. Leaving oil for too long only serves as fuel for the dandruff-causing fungus ‘Malassezia’.

So always warm your oil before applying, and rinse out after 20-30 minutes.

7-Curb Those Cravings:

Your waistline and blood sugar aren’t the only things affected by your sweet tooth; your dandruff-prone scalp is too. Excess sugar in the bloodstream contributes towards excess scalp oil production, and dandruff. So instead of sugar, try honey for sweetening your favorite desserts.

For extra dandruff protection, improve your diet by adding more vitamin B, zinc, and omega-3 foods. Examples include leafy greens, walnuts, eggs, and salmon, among others.

8-Try Aspirin:

This popular painkiller also contains salicylic acid, a key ingredient in most popular medicated shampoos for preventing dandruff and flaking. Simply ground two tablets to a fine powder, add to your regular shampoo amount, lather, leave for 1-2 minutes, and rinse. Follow up with a plain shampoo wash.

9-Look to Your Kitchen:

Baking soda acts as an excellent exfoliant that soothes itching and inflammation, and prevents visible flake buildup by reducing the dandruff-causing fungi.

Simply add 1-2 teaspoons baking soda into your shampoo and apply like aspirin, or skip the shampoo entirely and rinse directly with baking soda. Your hair may become dry at first, but will soon return to natural softness after a few weeks of use.

A pro-dandruff routine and some extra scalp care can help tame your dandruff. However, if you’ve been diligently following your new routine for a month and still see no improvement, consult with your doctor.

You can also book an appointment with a top Dermatologist in Lahore, Karachi and Islamabad through oladoc.com, or call our helpline at 042-3890-0939 for assistance to find the RIGHT Doctor for your dermal concerns.

Disclaimer: The contents of this article are intended to raise awareness about common health issues and should not be viewed as sound medical advice for your specific condition. You should always consult with a licensed medical practitioner prior to following any suggestions outlined in this article or adopting any treatment protocol based on the contents of this article.

Dr. Sadaf Amin
Dr. Sadaf Amin - Author Dr. Sadaf Amin is a Dermatologist practicing in Lahore. Dr. Sadaf Amin has the following degrees: M.B.B.S, F.C.P.S (Derma) and has 10 years of experience. You can book an appointment with Dr. Sadaf Amin by calling us or using the 'book appointment' button.
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