Does scalp psoriasis give you hair loss?
Psoriasis, a skin condition characterised by thick, scaly patches of skin. Typically it does not cause hair loss directly, however, in some cases, hair loss can occur in areas affected by psoriasis due to the inflammation and scaling associated with the condition.
Psoriasis can seriously affect the scalp, leading to dandruff-like flakes and thick scales that can build up on the scalp - this in turn can lead to a disrupted hair growth cycle. Severe cases of scalp psoriasis, known as psoriatic alopecia, can cause hair loss in the affected areas, resulting in temporary or permanent hair thinning or baldness.
What is psoriatic alopecia?
Psoriatic alopecia, also known as psoriatic hair loss and refers to a specific form of hair loss that occurs in conjunction with scalp psoriasis. Psoriatic alopecia is a relatively rare complication of scalp psoriasis, affecting a small percentage of people with psoriasis.
In psoriatic alopecia, the inflammation and scaling associated with psoriasis can disrupt the normal hair growth cycle, leading to hair loss in the affected areas. The hair loss may be temporary or permanent, depending on the severity of the condition and the effectiveness of treatment.
Psoriatic alopecia can present in various ways. Ranging from mild scaling and dandruff-like flakes on the scalp to extensive redness, inflammation, and thick, silvery-white scales that cover the scalp. The hair loss may be patchy or diffuse, and in some cases, it may be associated with itching, tenderness, or pain on the scalp.
Treatment for psoriatic alopecia
Treatment for psoriatic alopecia typically involves managing the underlying scalp psoriasis. This is usually with topical corticosteroids, medicated shampoos, and other topical treatments to reduce inflammation and scale formation. In some cases, systemic medications such as oral corticosteroids, retinoids, or biologic agents may be prescribed for more severe cases. It's important to consult a dermatologist or healthcare professional for an accurate diagnosis and appropriate treatment options if you suspect you may have psoriatic alopecia.
Can I stop my hair falling out if I have psoriasis
If you are experiencing hair loss related to psoriasis, there are steps you can take to potentially reduce or manage it.
Following a hair and scalp care routine that keeps your scalp refreshed, can help to reduce inflammation and scaling associated with scalp psoriasis. Use a mild shampoo and moisturising conditioner like Olsson formulated to be ultra lightweight and nourishing. The addition of aloe vera helps soothe irritated scalps, leaving hair soft and manageable. Patch tests are available to check for irritation.
Avoid scratching or picking at the scalp, which can often worsen scalp psoriasis. Our top tip is to ensure that your nails are short, to reduce the risk of damage to your scalp through any overwhelming need to scratch (we know how that feels, we’ve been there).
If your dermatologist or healthcare professional has prescribed topical corticosteroids, medicated shampoos, or other topical treatments for your scalp psoriasis, it sounds simple, but do make sure to use them as directed.
Stress can potentially trigger or worsen psoriasis flare-ups, including scalp psoriasis. Stress is also known to be a contributing factor to hair loss in general (although generally this is temporary).
Not all cases of psoriasis lead to hair loss
It's important to note that not everyone with scalp psoriasis will experience hair loss, and the severity of hair loss can vary from person to person. If you suspect that you are experiencing hair loss related to psoriasis, it's best to consult a dermatologist or a healthcare professional for proper evaluation and management.
They can provide you with a comprehensive diagnosis and recommend appropriate treatment options tailored to your specific condition.
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