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How to Identify Scalp Issues



‘Scalp issues’ is an umbrella term for a lot of common or severe scalp problems. A flaky scalp, an excessively oily scalp, and the presence of excessive dandruff are often considered the symptoms of ‘scalp issues.’ But, some symptoms can be overlooked, or even undetected until the problem aggravates further. In order to treat your scalp problems better, you need to diagnose them earlier. There are broadly two categories of scalp issues. The first is when excessive use of hairstyling products and shampoos leads to deterioration of the scalp area. The second is when you actually suffer from skin diseases, which also afflict the scalp. Read on to know how to identify the common scalp problems.

Dry scalp

If your scalp feels dry and taut, you may have a dry scalp. There are tiny flakes too, usually along the hairline and the neck. Dry scalps can both be triggered and aggravated by hot and dry summer weather or even dry winters. Washing one’s hair more than is required also causes dry scalp. Refrain from hot styling and always use warm to cool water. Use a dedicated dry-scalp shampoo and conditioner. You should also exfoliate by using a product like ADV Pre-Treatment Scalp Elixir by PHS Hairscience to cleanse your scalp from toxics and buildup.


Dandruff is different from a dry, flaky scalp in that is caused by excess sebum secretion. It is also marked by the rapid building up of dead skin which then flakes and falls off. Dandruff is usually accompanied by severe itching, redness, and serious flaking which is oily in nature. Even though it is not contagious, it needs immediate scalp treatment. The best way is to keep oil off the scalp by using shampoos with zinc, selenium sulfide. If you have a severely oily scalp, you should go for a cleansing product, like the ADV Purifying Cleanser by PHS Hairscience.

Seborrheic Dermatitis

This is when you feel your dandruff has gone from bad to worse. There is more redness and itching, and larger pieces of oily flakes coming off. Seborrheic dermatitis is a fungal problem and should not be taken lightly. Use medicated products and try to soothe the scalp. Use shampoos containing salicylic acid, coal tar or zinc. Seborrheic dermatitis can often worsen in the winters and is accompanied by hair loss.


The International Federation of Psoriasis Associations (IFPA) states that around 3% of the world’s population suffers from some form of psoriasis. It happens as a result of an autoimmune disorder, where the topmost layer of the scalp is in overproduction mode. Psoriasis is marked by scaly plaques that are pink in color. The skin here can also crack and bleed. It can also be a hereditary problem and requires immediate scalp treatment.

Tinea Capitis (Ringworm)

Ringworm of the scalp is a common scalp issue which is found most commonly in children. However, it affects adults too and is caused most commonly by contact among humans and animals. Having cats as pets could cause tinea capitis. You can also get tinea capitis, if you get in touch with infected bedding, towels, brushes and combs. Ringworm causes circular bald spots and broken hair. Go for regular scalp and hair maintenance treatments and don’t use anything that you suspect to have been contaminated.