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Haircare - Dealing with dandruff

Dandruff is a common condition in which the scalp is covered with flakes of dead skin that can then fall onto the shoulders. Some cases of dandruff are caused by an increase in a natural yeast on the scalp, which results in a disturbance in the normal shedding of skin cells. The skin cell-shedding process can also be speeded up if you're under stress or during times when you're not eating enough fresh fruit and vegetables. Insufficient rinsing of shampoos and conditioners can also give rise to an irritable scalp.

Wash your hair daily or every other day with a mild, frequent-use shampoo or a shampoo specifically formulated to control dandruff. Rinse away the shampoo away thoroughly. Contrary to popular belief, if you regularly suffer from dandruff your scalp is more likely to be oily than dry. If you use a conditioner, only apply it to the ends of the hair. Avoid scratching the scalp as this may lead to irritation and even infection. If your dandruff does not clear up quickly, seek medical advice as a specialised haircare programme may be needed.

Above all, ensure that you are eating well because some cases of dandruff are thought to be connected with a lack of several vitamins, including A and B6. Try to keep your stress levels low as nervous tension can lead to skin dryness and, in turn, flaking. For healthy circulation, gently massage your scalp with your fingertips when shampooing. A relaxed scalp should move beneath the fingertips whereas a tense scalp will feel as tight as a drumskin!