Synonyms in a broader sense

Dandruff, pityriasis simplex capillitii, head seborrhea, pityriasis simplex capitis
English: dandruff, scurf


Flaky scalp

For dandruff (Squamae) are deposits of detachable or independently detaching horn cell complexes of different shapes (dry or fatty) and sizes. A distinction is made between wedge-shaped (pityriasiform), platelet-shaped (psoriasiform), plate-shaped (ichtyosiform) and leaf-shaped (lamellar) Dandruff.

Frequency in the population

Will the hair not washed regularly, everyone gets visible Dandruff, often after just a few days. In 10-50% of people, however, dandruff occurs regularly regardless of hair washing, most often between the ages of 20 and 40. Men are usually more affected than women. Dandruff is rare in children.

to form

Both Dandruff A distinction is usually made between two forms:

  1. For one thing, there is dry dandruff. They occur when the scalp is very dry and occur more frequently in winter, e.g. through the heated room air.
  2. The greasy dandruff one finds against it greasy Hair, i.e. too high sebum production, in which the scalp is often reddened and the Skin itches. This can also be an indication of a seborrheic dermatitis be.



The symptoms that occur with increased dandruff vary in severity itching (Pruritus), as well as reddening of the scalp or small skin injuries (Lesions) through increased Scratch. But also weeping areas of the skin, pustules (Accumulations of pus on the skin) and Hair losswho e.g. can be triggered by scratching or the result of a hormonal disorder (Androgenetic alopecia) or more Sebum production (Alopecia sebborrhoica) can be counted among the symptoms.


The diagnosis can through a comprehensive survey (anamnese) and clinical examination by the dermatologist (Dermatologist). This includes a family and social history. But also the so-called vegetative anamnesis must not be neglected, in the after connections between the occurrence of the Dandruff and the season or the consumption of certain foods is asked.

In addition, it should be clarified whether there are previous illnesses, a pregnancy exists or whether certain stressful situations like a surgery have preceded. An inspection of the whole skin and hair is also necessary. A Laboratory diagnostics can also be consulted, this includes a differential blood count, a tissue examination (Histopathology) after sampling, one allergy - Diagnostics and microscopic evidence of Mushrooms in the tissue.

Please also read our topic: Dander


Around dandruff / Dandruff To prevent or reduce them, it is helpful to eliminate behavior-related risk factors. This includes a moderate one nutrition, little alcohol and stress. Often, by taking appropriate hair care with an anti-dandruff shampoo, avoiding harsh Combing, as well as perming or hair dye relief can be achieved. If there is no improvement, a dermatologist should be consulted after four weeks at the latest intolerance of ingredients in shampoos or food.

Dandruff inhibitors such as selenium and Coal tar or also dandruff substances such as Salicylic acid, sulfur, Head oils or urea are often found in anti-dandruff shampoos or can be prescribed by a doctor. In addition, anti-inflammatory substances such as Steroids e.g. Cortisone creams, as well as anti-itch medication may be prescribed.

Is there a Fungal infection before, can a Antifungal agent be prescribed. These are mostly local (topical) applied drugs such as Clotrimazole or Ketoconazole. This "Antifungal agents“Hinder the further multiplication of the fungus by killing the pathogens that are in the multiplication phase and prevent further fungi from entering the multiplication phase. It refers to Shampoosthat must be applied twice a week. Another option are hair solutions with the antifungal agent Bifonazolethat are simply applied to the scalp and do not need to be rinsed off. Also Zinc pyrithione and Selenium disulfide have an anti-mycotic effect.

Is the Cause of dandruff severe bacterial inflammation Antibiotics that inhibit the growth of the bacteria or kill them.

Are a Neurodermatitis or one psoriasis the trigger, the disease must first be treated as such.


Dandruff can usually be successfully treated within four to five weeks, even if it is caused by a fungal infection. It However, it is important to ensure regular use of the appropriate anti-dandruff shampoo and successfully combat the cause and avoid certain risk factors.