The following is an email that was sent to me by one of the readers on this website. It outlines his journey and how he eventually stumbled upon a treatment that has been working for him. So here is Joakims – Nystatin Seborrheic Dermatitis Treatment:
I’ve struggled with SD for the last 5 years or so, and I had almost given up, but now I’ve found my solution. I realize people have SD to different degrees, so this might not be universal, but maybe you can help me reach the people at SkinDrone, and it might help some. Although, I think it will work for most people since it was so effective for me. I have no problems with SD any more. Not in my face, not in my scalp, not on my chest. All gone. I’ll begin with my story and then the solution (but to save you the suspense and disappointment if you already know about it and it didn’t work for you, it’s Nystatin).
Table of Contents
Searching for a Treatment
I went to my doctor here in Denmark and he gave me Brentacort cream with hydrocortison (cortisol) and miconazol (some anti fungal). Now, I think we both agree that the steroid hormone cortisol cream is not the way to go. It makes the skin thinner and more sensitive in the long run. And I guess we are both in it for the long run, since there is apparently no permanent cure, only treatment and control. I also used nizoral shampoo and it made the scalp situation better, but again it didn’t really solve the problem. If I recall correctly, you had tried the same things with the same less-than-satisfying outcome. So, I just kind of came to terms with my condition since the visit to the doctors didn’t resolve the problem. I gave up on professional help.
Last winter I went to the Philippines and the sun and salt-water made the seborrheic dermatitis go away – completely! I had no trouble at all even though both alcohol and poor sleep came along with me on that vacation. This gave me new hope, and I thought, there must be a way to get rid of it!
The Search Continues
So I started looking into the alternative treatments: I tried the salt-water treatment when I came back to Denmark, and I tried to sit in direct sunlight for at least 15 minutes a day – even during the cold and dark winter; I tried changing my diet – maybe it was the exotic food that had really cured me, while I was in the Philippines. I cut alcohol, coffee, milk (which actually did more than I care to admit), tried to eliminate bread and eggs and all sorts of stuff; I got fish-oil, extra vitamin-D and other dietary supplements; I went and bought a pure aloe vera extract and ordered Aveeno eczema moisturiser with colloidal oatmeal from Canada; I tried getting some time in the sauna regularly, since I had read somewhere that it might help; I tried to meditate; I tried drinking green tea every night and applying the teabag to my face. I literally tea-bagged myself to try to end this! I saw some progress, but compared to the amount of work involved and – which was far worse – the social stigma of not drinking neither coffee nor beer, it was just not worth it. Especially because I was not completely rid of the SD, it had only diminished. And I gave up on the alternative treatments.
My mother stayed hopeful and kept pushing me, so I went back to the doctor – desperate – and asked for something else. “I’ve tried everything, I don’t want cortisol, I’m open to alternative treatment, anything, what can you suggest?”. He said cortisol is the only way, but he was willing to send me to a dermatologist to finally determine if I really had SD or if it actually rosacea or something else.
The Last Appointment
So I pack my bag with all my alternative stuff that I want to present to the dermatologist. I prepare a speech to persuade him to consider alternative solutions. I’m so afraid that he will push the same damn cortisol cream on me, but I’m ready. I want to fight for another treatment. The dermatologist takes one look at me and says “oh, you’ve got SD, I’ve got just the thing for you”. I, half-joking/half-afraid, ask him if it’s a cortisol cream. “No no no, that’s the worst thing you can do. I’ve got something else for you, and I’m sure it will work wonders”. He gives me a prescription for another topical cream and is ready to send me out the door. I’m so worked up at that point – my bag packed with pills and moisturisers that I’m ready to whip out and discuss, and my speech ready in the back of my mind. Because of all I’ve been through I find it hard to believe in this “miracle solution”. But he seems determined and tells me to come back if it doesn’t work. I haven’t talked to him since.
So what he prescribed to me is this Nystatin creme. It’s basically an anti-fungal without the steroid hormones. It’s a prescription drug in Denmark, but in Germany, he told me, it’s over-the-counter and you can use it almost as much as you want. But once every day should be enough. And it is. I was sceptical, but I gave it two weeks – still not drinking milk, and still watching out for beer and coffee – and it all went away. I never even applied it to my chest but the inflammation that I used to have there is completely gone. My scalp has also gotten better just from applying the cream to my face. I still use a shampoo with zinc pyrithione (like in Head&Shoulders, if I am not mistaken) and climbazole, but this is also over-the-counter and easy on the skin and hair.
How It Worked Out in The End
I can wear dark t-shirts again without getting dandruff all over them. I don’t have to worry about scratching my nose or running a hand through my hair. I don’t have to stay home in case I get a flare-up, because I don’t get those anymore. I tried to let go of the reins and have a beer or two, and maybe a cup of coffee, and still nothing. I don’t have to watch out anymore. Beer, coffee, exercise, and long, hot showers – and this is during winter with almost no sun. It’s just gone. For all I know I’m cured – you know, for good. I haven’t seen anything that resembles SD in 1½ months since I began the treatment – even though I’ve missed a few days here and there where I didn’t use the drug.
I think you can get Nystatin in the States as well: http://www.drugs.com/cdi/nystatin-cream.html but I’m not sure how the system works. Otherwise, have somebody send it from Germany where it’s just over-the-counter
If you are still struggling I hope this will help you. And I hope you haven’t heard of it before and just went “Oh, that. Yeah, that didn’t work for me”.
It truly changed my life and I hope it can do the same for you and all the readers of SkinDrone.
Thank you Joakim for taking the time to write about your experience. It is detailed information like this that can help others who are likely taking the same path as you. When reading the email myself there were many parts that closely related to my own experience. Glad to hear that you have found a seborrheic dermatitis treatment that works for you. Once again, thank you for taking the time to write this and I hope it is useful for others.