What Are the Different Types of Scalp Problems?

Dandruff is a common scalp problem.
A sebaceous cyst on a scalp.
Head lice are scalp problems that typically affect children.
Specially designed combs are used to remove lice and nits from the scalp and hair.
Dry scalp is a common scalp problem.
Article Details
  • Written By: Patti Kate
  • Edited By: W. Everett
  • Images By: Jasmin Merdan, Paul Huxley, Warren Rosenberg, Goodluz, Roblan
  • Last Modified Date: 21 June 2014
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There are several types of scalp problems that may affect a person, some of which are dandruff, scalp psoriasis, and scalp eczema. A common condition is dry scalp. A yeast infection or a fungal infection may also cause scalp problems.

For many individuals, dandruff is a common annoyance and issue. This may be created by a dry scalp or caused by hereditary conditions. This common condition of the scalp causes flaky pieces of dry skin to shed from the scalp. For some people, dandruff can be a recurrent issue and made worse by environmental conditions, such as dry air.

Dandruff is a scalp problem that can be controlled by the use of medicated shampoos. In many cases, dandruff causes scalp irritation or itch. Limiting exposure to harsh shampoos and other chemicals on the hair can also help.

Scalp problems caused by head lice or hair lice often occur in children who are exposed through personal contact at school or other places. Although anyone may contract head lice, it is more commonly seen in children due to sharing hairbrushes and other accessories. Hair lice are parasites, which means they live off human blood. These insects embed themselves in the scalp and hair of victims, where they lay their eggs and reproduce. They lice eggs are almost microscopic in size and cannot be easily detected by the naked eye.


Common symptoms of head lice are uncontrollable itching and red patchy areas on the scalp. There are specially formulated preparations made for killing head lice and their eggs. In addition, the person needs to discard all clothing and bed clothes with which he has come in contact. Washing all articles of clothing or linens in the hottest possible water may also destroy the parasites.

Scalp psoriasis is a common condition that causes scalp problems for many individuals. This is a genetic condition that cannot be spread from person to person. There are various levels of scalp psoriasis. Patches of inflamed areas on the scalp may become infected if constant itching occurs. Medications may control the disease, although there is no cure.

Another skin condition causing scalp problems for many is known as scalp eczema. This condition may cause flakiness and areas of intense itching as well. Medications, ointments, and special shampoos may help control symptoms.

Yeast and fungal infections may cause damage to the hair follicles if left untreated. These infections not only cause scalp problems, but in severe cases, may pose a threat to general health and well being. A dermatologist may properly diagnose the condition and prescribe a course of treatment.


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