Seborrheic dermatitis free, 819 days and counting. See what I've been doing

This article examines the relationship between seborrheic dermatitis and hair loss in detail. What might be the cause, how we may be able to reverse it and potential ways to speed up recovery.

The first section examines the idea that the cause of hair loss may be attributed to the malassezia fungus. Next, potential approaches to treatment are reviewed. After this, other potential factors that may be fueling the hair loss are considered. And finally, several popular hair growth approaches are analyzed.

Table of Contents

The Fungus Most Commonly Responsible for Seborrheic Dermatitis and Accompanying Hair Loss

Hair loss is a common side effect of seborrheic dermatitis. And this is especially true, if inflammation is allowed to spiral out of control and flaking occurs on a large portion of the skin surface. Yet, the link between seborrheic dermatitis and hair loss remains illusive.

Is seborrheic dermatitis directly responsible for the hair loss or are the underlying factors of seborrheic dermatitis causing the hair loss?

The majority of medical literature and even online discussion typically concludes that the majority of seborrheic dermatitis is caused by the malassezia fungus. This fungus is considered lipophilic, meaning that it feeds off of fats (lipids). And this is where the problem begins.

Normal skin uses sebum (secreted from the hair follicles) to protect itself from the environment and retain moisture. And a significant part of this sebum, is made up of lipids. And these exact lipids that our skin utilizes for its protection, can be a prime food source for the malassezia. This makes the fungus extremely common and present even on the skin of individuals who are not affected by seborrheic dermatitis.

The issue is that in some individuals this fungus can cause seborrheic dermatitis, which can often be accompanied by significant hair loss. In these cases, the fungus appears to disrupt the skins natural defense mechanism and in some cases, invade the hair follicles (from which the sebum is secreted) (source). And this invasion of the hair follicles may literally be at the root of the hair loss that comes along with seborrheic dermatitis.

Perhaps Your Issue is Not Malassezia

The majority of this article is focused on discussing hair loss that accompanies malassezia infestation. In some individuals, the issues may not actually be caused by malassezia, but another bacteria/fungus/micro-organism. In these cases, much discussion relating directly malassezia might not be applicable. Nevertheless, many points may still be relevant.

Fighting the Malassezia Fungus to Help Restore Normal Hair Growth

Based on the theory discussed above, the most direct way to reverse hair loss and improve hair growth would be to fight the malassezia fungus invading the hair follicle. This should restore follicle health and pave the way for normal hair growth.

This next section will discuss the most wide-spread methods that have been documented to be effective against the malassezia fungus. The first two methods will be the more researched ones, but rely on the usage of commercial anti-fungal agents. After these, focus will shift towards more natural methods that are popular across the internet (some of which do have medical research behind them as well).

Pyrithione Zinc Is One of the Most Popular Anti Malassezia Solutions

Pyrithione Zinc is one of the most popular anti-fungal agents used against the malassezia fungus. And the shampoo that contains it (Head & Shoulders), is actually one of the most popular shampoos in the world.

Regular usage has been shown to be effective at reducing malassezia colonies on the skin, restoring normal hair growth, and returning the skins ultrastructure to normal (source). But it is rather difficult to find studies that actually examine it’s effect on hair growth in individuals experiencing strong malassezia infection, instead most studies on its effect on hair loss/growth are more general in nature.

Pyrithione Zinc and Hair Growth – Highlights from Medical Literature

Overall though, pyrithione zinc is one of the most documented anti-fungal agents shown to be effective against malassezia. And here are some interesting points gathered from various research papers:

  • Hair quality and overall performance on scaling and itching appears to be better for pyrithione zinc then ketoconazole (source)
  • Appears to normalize epithelial keratinization (formation of outer most layer of skin) and/or sebum production, resulting in improved scalp health (source)
  • Selenium sulfide appears to be superior to pyrithione zinc in reducing malassezia numbers (source)
  • Regular shampoo usage (2-3 times per week) may result in a decrease in hair shaft diameter (hair thickness), but a significant improvement in new hair growth was noted (source)

One study (source) that tried to examine the effects on hair growth concluded that the daily usage resulted in a significant overall increase in total visible hair counts. But the issue with this study is that individuals with seborrheic dermatitis, psoriasis and other scalp infections were specifically excluded. As a result, this study may not be a good representation of how significant results may be for those actually suffering from a malassezia infestation.

Ketoconazole (Nizoral) May Be Better for Hair Growth

Another popular anti-fungal agent for the treatment of seborrheic dermatitis is ketoconazole. Most medical literature seems to indicate that it is actually more effective then pyrithione zinc (source). In addition to this, ketoconazole usage appears to be more popular among individuals trying to combat premature balding.

This would indicate that ketoconazole may be a better option for control of malassezia and restoration of hair growth then pyrithione zinc. However, one studies concluded that individuals testing both products actually preferred pyrithione zinc in overall effectiveness.

Ketoconazole and Hair Growth – Highlights from Medical Literature

  • On average, individuals reported better results from pyrithione zinc as opposed to ketoconazole in terms of overall performance on hair health (hair-combing ease, smoothness, frizz, etc) (source)
  • In an experiment carried out on mice, it appeared to stimulate hair growth, and when it was integrated into a shampoo (opposed to a regular lotion/ointment) penetration was enhanced (source)
  • Using ketoconazole containing shampoo 2-3 times a week for 6 months had no change on hair density, but had the most drastic (a reduction of almost 20%) impact on hair shedding from all anti-dandruff shampoos tested (source)
  • Regular usage was shown to increase hair shaft thickness while also producing a small decrease in sebum output at the skin surface (source)

Raw Honey for Malassezia Control

In Arab medicine, honey has long been used for treatment of fungal infections of the skin and modern medical literature has highlighted its antifungal activity against malassezia and broad antimicrobial properties (source). This makes honey a prime candidate for an all natural approach to treating malassezia infection and allowing for a healthy scalp environment.

Honey treatments have been discussed previously on this website in significant length. These can be found here: Basics of Treating Seborrheic Dermatitis with Raw Honey

Raw Honey and Hair Growth – Highlights from Medical Literature

Medical literature regarding any potential impact that honey may have on hair growth is fairly limited.

  • One paper mentioned that honey application on a dog had restored had restored hair growth on skin severally damaged from a house explosion (areas of skin without treatment did not have any hair growth) (source)
  • In one study of 20 patients with seborrheic dermatitis, regular treatment with honey resulted in subjective (self-reported) improvement in hair loss (source)
  • A patent filed back in 2000 suggests that a combination of honey, vinegar and water may aid in stimulation of new hair growth and prevent/minimize hair loss, but this was note the core of the patent (source)

Raw Honey and Hair Growth – Online Search

If we don’t restrict our search to medical literature, the internet is full of blog posts and forum posts that discuss honeys potential in stimulating hair growth. These will not be discussed here as there doesn’t appear to be enough valuable discussion or user validation. However, the amount of discussion on this topic appears to further validate the idea of using raw honey to aid hair growth.

Using Natural Anti-Fungal Fatty Acids Against Malassezia

There are also several fatty acids found in nature which appear to have significant anti-fungal activity against a variety of fungi (source). And one of the most popular of these, is caprylic acid.

Caprylic acid often used is the emollient (oily) component of many skin care products. And when it is used at an adequate concentration, it’s been shown to have broad antifungal activity against a variety of malassezia species (source).

If hair loss that accompanies seborrheic dermatitis can be reversed once a healthy scalp microflora is restored, one could argue that caprylic acid may be beneficial in restoring normal hair growth. However, there does not appear to be any medical literature which evaluates it’s effectiveness in the area of hair growth stimulation.

Other Anti-Fungal Solutions

Earlier, two of the most popular anti-fungal solutions were discussed (pyrithione zinc and ketocanozole). In addition to these, there is a significant amount of other anti-fungal solutions currently available. Some of these are prescription based, while others are sold over the counter. These include:

  • Bifonazole
  • Miconazole
  • Fluconazole
  • Metronidazole
  • Ciclopirox
  • Terbinafine
  • Nystatin

And some which are not officially considered anti-fungal:

  • Selenfium Sulphide
  • Sulphur
  • Tar
  • Lithium Succinate
  • Benzyol Peroxide
  • Propylene Glycole

These agents are noted here for reference, however we will not be discussing these here in much detail.

Tons of Other Not So Well Documented Methods

In addition to the items discussed above, there are tons of other potential methods of fighting the malassezia fungus. Some of these have a good amount of discussion online, but the research behind these is fairly limited:

Ways To Stimulate Hair Growth After Fungus Has Been Controlled

Once the scalp micrflora is brought back to a healthy state, hair growth should naturally restore to normal. But if hair loss was significant, increasing the rate of restoration may be helpful. This section will discuss some of the potential methods this can be achieved.

Improving Circulation to Improve Growth

As with the majority of bodily functions, improving blood and nutrient delivery should increase the rate of repair and cellular activity. Thus, increasing circulation on our scalp and improving nutrient delivery to our hair follicles should in theory increase the rate of growth.

L-Arginine

L-arginine is a non-essential amino acid (protein) that humans typically obtain from diet. Athletes often use it as supplement based on the idea that it can increase blood flow and improve the recovery rate of muscle tissue.

The area which is most interest to us, is the fact that nitric oxide is produced from l-arginine. And nitric oxide appears to have both anti-fungal potential (source) and the ability to mediate vasodilatation (widening of blood vessels) (source). Thus, improving the availability of l-arginine at the skin surface may improve local nitric oxide production resulting in improved blood flow.

Many Hair Restoration Shampoos Contain L-Arginine

Luckily, finding products that contain l-arginine is not very difficult. Many of the shampoos currently sold under various labels and aimed at hair restoration contain l-arginine. Some examples include:

The biggest issue is that products typically do not specify the relative amount of ingredients they contain. Plus, shampoos are quickly washed off. These factors, make it rather difficult to determine if a shampoo will really provide enough l-arginine to achieve any beneficial effects. Perhaps, a leave-on product that species the relative amount of l-arginine it contains, may be more beneficial.

Can a Scalp Massage Help Improve Hair Growth?

Something as simple as a scalp massage may also be beneficial for improving blood flow to the scalp. The it has many positives: it’s completely free, can be done as frequently as you like and it feels amazing.

The research in this area is fairy limited, but there are patents that describe using a head massage device to stimulate blood flow and improve hair growth. Here is the most relevant one:

And there was one case study published by Cameron University in which massage, relaxation and monetary reward resulted in improvement/reversal of overall hair loss (source).

Correcting Nutritional Deficiencies May Reverse Hair Loss and Improve Growth

Many believe nutrition plays a large role in determining the growth rate and quality of hair. The research on this subject is quite sparse and mainly outlines the fact that deficiency of some nutrients (not very common in the modern world) may lead to hair loss/thinning. Yet, this does not stop various blogs and forums across the internet making a large range of recommendations on which foods and supplements can improve hair growth.

This section will look at some of the more popular nutrients that relate to hair loss/growth and make corresponding recommendations.

Biotin and It’s Role in Hair Growth

Most of the claims that biotin can regrow hair are anecdotal (unproven). A biotin deficiency may be both genetic (individual’s genes) or acquired (dietary and lifestyle choices). The acquired form is very rare in adults and typically only occurs due to alcoholism, malabsorption, pregnancy (source), but can also be a result of unusual dietary choices.

The most frequent cause of acquired biotin deficiency in adults, is the consumption of raw egg. This comes from the fact that the egg white contains a protein called avidin. This unique protein can bind with biotin and prevent its absorption by our bodies. Luckily, cooking denatures avidin and in this state, it does not appear to bind (preventing it’s usage by our bodies) to biotin (source).

What Does Research Say About Biotin

Actual research on biotin supplementation and it’s effect on hair loss is quite sparse. A small study on 46 women showed no results (source), and no clinic trials exist showing is efficacy (source). Yet, there has been some mention of its potential usage based on it’s positive effect on brittle nails (source). But, this really is not enough to warrant it’s general recommendation.

Most research on this subject is mainly concerned with babies and small children. Chances of deficiency at this stage of life are greatest.

If the deficiency is genetic, it can be fatal during the first 6 weeks of life it and surviving infants have extensive dermatitis and severe alopecia (hair loss) (source). If the genetic deficiency becomes pronounced after the first 3 months of life, some children may experience small (less then normal) amounts of hair growth, but some may not have any hair growth at all.

The acquired form is quite rare as biotin is present in a large variety of food and synthesized by bacteria within the gut itself.

Zinc and It’s Illusive Connection to Hair Loss

There are tons of articles on the internet which state that a zinc deficiency can cause hair loss. And that supplementation can improve hair growth. Yet, the medical literature on the subject shows mixed outcomes and results are never as clear cut as online articles may suggest.

One study, done in 1981, tested the effectiveness of zinc sulphate supplements on 46 hair loss patients and concluded that no improvement occurred (source). However, a more recent study carried out in 2009 on patients diagnosed with alopecia areata (an auto-immune disease that causes balding in random patches) showed promising results (source).

There are a number of smaller medical case studies which do show some potential for zinc to reverse hair loss:

But case studies on single patients do not provide enough evidence to warrant any general recommendations.

Overall, it is likely best to ensure we obtain enough zinc by eating a well balanced diet. The best sources of zinc are seafood and meat. Plant sources such as seeds, beans, peas and lentils do provide some zinc. But, vegetarians are often recommended to supplement as their diets typically result in low zinc intakes.

Iron May Improve Hair Growth in Cases of Deficiency

Iron is one of the worlds most common nutritional deficiencies. And it can results in diminished intellectual performance and decrease resistance to infection (source).

One of the earliest studies was carried out over 40 years ago (in 1963 to be exact). In this study scientists demonstrated that an iron deficiency could be the direct cause of of hair loss in women and correction therapy was used to reverse this hair loss (source). This study sparked interest in using iron to reverse hair loss. However, larger more recent studies failed to show any direct connection between iron deficiency and hair loss:

Even though there does appear to be some cases in which iron may contribute to hair growth, there is not enough evidence to suggest universal screening for iron deficiency in hair loss patients (source).

The easiest way to avoid iron deficiency is through adequate dietary intake. And similar to zinc, animal sources of iron (such as various meats and seafood) appear to be preferable to plant sources and iron fortified foods (source).

Over Supplementation Can Actually Lead to Hair Loss

Sometimes less is more. Excessive amounts of certain vitamins and nutrients has actually been documented to result in hair loss.

The most established of these relates to excessive vitamin A intake (source). However, some studies suggest too much of vitamin E, selenium (source) and/or folic acid (source) also have negative results. As a result, the best approach to prevent deficiency is likely through a balanced diet and not abusive supplementation.

Additional Nutrition Related Findings

Other nutritional deficiencies that appear to cause hair loss and documented in medical literature, include:

However, the internet is also full of recommendations which are not based on science. These typically result from the recycling of information from potentially unreliable sources. If you conduct your own research, be vigilant and look for information backed by at-least some sort of research.

Summary of Nutrition for Hair Growth

Research appears on nutrition and its effect on hair growth typically examines how various deficiencies may cause hair loss. And correcting these deficiencies can reverse hair loss and return hair growth to normal. However, supplementation without medical testing may actually be counter productive.

Perhaps the best approach is to simply ensure your diet has a large variety of healthy food choices and is suitable for your unique lifestyle.

Most Popular Methods That Specifically Target Hair Growth

In addition to the items described above, there are tons of discussed treatments found across the internet which target hair loss/growth directly (irrespective of malassezia). The most popular of these, is drug by the name of minoxidil and an all natural oil derived from castor beans. These approaches are discussed next.

Minoxidil for Stimulating Hair Growth

Minoxidil is one of the most famous hair growth stimulates known today. It’s results are so pronounced that in the 80’s some doctors started prescribing it to balding patients before it was ever approved by the FDA for treatment of baldness.

Minoxidil appears to be a potent vasodilator (source, source) and it’s most likely mode of action is increasing local blood flow.

The biggest downfalls, is that results take time to be noticeable and that once treatment is stopped, hair loss often returns (source).

Today, minoxidil products are widely available and can be purchased without any prescription. Costco carries it’s own Kirkland version, Wal-Mart has it’s own Equate version, and Amazon has a ton of offerings from various companies. And the reviews for the majority of these minoxidil products are quite favorable, further affirming its effectiveness.

Minoxidil and Potential Side Effects

As with most drugs, minoxidil has it’s own set of potential side effects. The biggest one is that in some individuals, it may produce the opposite effect and result in temporary hair loss. Other side effects include potential skin irritation, unwanted hair growth in other parts of the body, and unwanted thickening and darkening of hair.

Minoxidil – Highlights from Medical Literature
  • A solution containing only 1% minoxidil was shown to be effective for hair regrowth, but a 5% solution was more effective (source)
  • When 5% foam was compared to a regular 2% solution, results were practically the same (source)
  • In some patients, minoxidil can cause atopic dermatitis and scaling of the scalp and potential exacerbation of seborrheic dermatitis. In patients tested, the cause was not the active minoxidil, but the other ingredients of the formulation such as propylene glycol. Switching to alternative minoxidil preparations appeared to resolve symptoms (source)

Castor Oil for Hair Growth

Many blogs and forums tout castor oil as being one of the most effective natural treatments for improving hair growth. And many individuals claim that it has been used for decades.

The active component is the ricinoleic acid which believed to increase topical blood circulation.

The issues is that medical literature on this subject is practically non-existent. The most relevant item I could find was a review article published in 1982 that summarized the various uses of castor oil (source). It mentioned that the oil is used in Ethiopia to combat seborrhea and tinea (another fungal skin infection). And that an alcoholic solution has been recognized in Italy to have anti-seborrheic action and favor the growth of hair.

Adding Rosemary Essential Oil to Castor Oil

Many sources also suggest that adding rosemary essential oil will further improve castor oil’s effectiveness. But once again, research on this subject is very sparse and the closest item I managed to find was a patent aimed at stimulating hair growth which included a rosemary extract (source).

Caffeine to Stimulate Cellular Growth

Some researchers suggest that topical application of caffeine can improve barrier function (source), increase hair shaft diameter (source) and stimulate/promote new hair growth. And shampoos containing caffeine appear to be excellent an method for delivering it into the hair follicles (source).

One study showed that regular application of a caffeine containing preparation reduced the number of hairs extracted using a pull test by 8.14% after 2 months and by 15.33% after 4 months (source).

While another study concluded that caffeine led to a significant stimulation of hair follicle growth. However, at higher concentrations it may actually have a negative impact on results as it may cause over-stimulation, over consumption of energy reserves and exhaustion of proliferation capability (source).

Even though caffeine does appear to hold some value in stimulating hair growth, most studies suggest that further research is needed. Nevertheless , for individuals desperate to improve hair growth, it may be a valuable addition to your regimen.

The Connection Between Androgens, Seborrheic Dermatitis and Hair Loss

The hormones classified as androgens are some of the clearest regulators of human hair growth (source). Because the appear in greater abundance in males, people refer to them as male hormones (as their production is greater in males). But in reality they are actually present in both genders.

Androgens are responsible for the gradual replacement of baby hair (vellus hair) by more thicker, longer and darker hairs during puberty. Yet, they appear to have the opposite effect on scalp hair, causing regression throughout the aging process. Some predisposed individuals are more susceptible to this regression and issues of male pattern baldness arise.

One interesting point, is that androgens are also responsible for activating sebaceous gland activity (during puberty) and regulating it throughout adulthood. Since sebaceous gland activity is closely related to seborrheic dermatitis progression, it is possible that androgens may actually play a crucial role in the in the progression of seborrheic dermatitis itself. And the following three facts further help illustrator this point:

  • The malassezia fungus feeds off of sebaceous gland secretions which is regulated by androgens (source)
  • Seborrheic dermatitis often appears after puberty and this is the time that androgens become active (source)
  • Males have more androgens and seborrheic dermatitis is more common in men than in women (source)

However, even though androgens do appear to be related to both premature hair loss and seborrheic dermatitis, the connection is not clear. Some studies and review papers on seborrheic dermatitis do suggest that androgens may play a role, but most agree that they are not the direct cause (source).

Conclusion

First we examined the potential role that malassezia fungus may play in influencing hair loss. They key takeaway was that malassezia feed off of the oils secreted by our sebaceous glands (many of which are connected to hair follicles) . As a result, malassezia colonies may be more active around the hair follicles and negatively impact normal hair growth.

As a result, reducing the number of malassezia colonies may reverse hair loss and return hair growth back to normal. To achieve this reduction, a significant number of topical anti-fungals (pyrithione zinc, ketoconazole, raw honey, etc) are currently available. And finding one suitable for daily usage may be a necessity (if the skin is failing to naturally regulate it’s microbial environment).

List of Most Common Malassezia Treatments:

  • Pyrithione Zinc (Head and Shoulders)
  • Ketoconazole (Nizoral)
  • Various Azole Anti-Fungals (Bifonazole, Miconazole, Fluconazole, Metronidazole)
  • Ciclopirox
  • Terbinafine
  • Caprylic Acid
  • Nystatin
  • Selenfium Sulphide
  • Sulphur
  • Tar
  • Lithium Succinate
  • Benzyol Peroxide
  • Raw Honey

Sometimes individuals may experience a negative reaction to various products. This reaction might not be caused by the active ingredient, but something else contained in the formulation. Thus, it may be worthwhile to compare and evaluate all ingredients while finding a suitable solution.

In addition to this, it might beneficial to aid hair growth by stimulating the hair follicles by inducing vasodilation (improving blood flow). This could improve nutritional delivery and increase the rate of cellular growth/repair. Topical solutions such as the drug minoxidil and a natural oil from the castor bean may also be of value. However, perhaps simply resolving seborrheic dermatitis may be enough to return things back to normal.

Potential Ways to Improve Hair Growth:

  • L-arginine
  • Caffeine
  • Scalp Massage
  • Minoxidil
  • Castor Oil

But in order for any attempts at improving hair growth to be effective, we must ensure that we do not have any nutritional deficiencies which may be preventing progress. The most common of these appear to be iron, zinc, and the amino acid l-lysine. But medical testing for deficiencies is likely the best approach as over supplementation can actually result in the opposite effect (hair loss).

Overall though, I strongly believe that solving seborrheic dermatitis is most likely to resolve hair loss in the majority of cases. But obviously improving the rate of hair recovery definitely can’t hurt. If you found any of this information on seborrheic dermatitis and hair loss/growth helpful, have any additional suggestions or simply want to share your experience, drop a comment below.

Seborrheic dermatitis free, 819 days and counting. See what I've been doing

About Michael A.

After being affected by seborrheic dermatitis, I have made it my goal to gather and organize all the information that has helped me in my journey.

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What causes seborrheic dermatitis

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13 Responses to “Reversing Seborrheic Dermatitis and Hair Loss”

  1. Marie Profile Photo
    Marie

    Here’s a shampoo worth trying: Aveda’s Scalp Benefits. For 2 years, I had pretty bad seborrheic dermatitis, and tried all the different things the dermatologist told me about. At best, they just kept it somewhat in check; some things seemed to do almost nothing. A hairdresser tried the Aveda shampoo; it worked, and for the last 6+ years, I’ve used it every time I seemed to have a small outbreak. I also used it on my face & ears. It may not work if you have a really severe case, but if it’s milder, try it. Aveda stores will usually give you samples (bring a small container with you so they can’t use not having a container as an excuse).

    Reply
  2. Marie Profile Photo
    Marie

    Thanks for all the information; it’s very useful and appreciated.

    One little note (I’m mentioning this because you make the mistake many times): if you cannot replace “its” with “it is”, then it is spelled without the apostrophe. “It’s” means “it is”. “Its” is possessive.

    Biotin and It’s Role in Hair Growth
    In the aboe example, there should be no apostrophe; “its” is possessive, referring to “biotin’s role in hair growth.

    Reply
    • Samantha kidston Profile Photo
      Samantha kidston

      You’ve got to be kidding me, I’ve been battling scalp and baldness problems for months now, this is the most helpful info I’ve found, and you are correcting spelling??? Get a grip!

      Reply
    • Marie Profile Photo
      Marie

      Maybe spell ‘above’ correctly to be taken serious as an expert in grammatical and or spelling errors!

      Reply
  3. Dr preeti Profile Photo
    Dr preeti

    Hi , this is preeti. I have been suffering from severe hair loss since the last 10 years . It started with some features of seborrheic dermatitis..With excessive flaking etc . Now also flaking is still there ..May be because I’m using minoxidil ..But I have lost almost 90% of my hair .. have episodes of pityriasis versicolor as
    well ..Almost every 2nd year..
    Do you have any research results with my profile?? It would of really great help ..Thank you

    Reply
    • Gulrukh Jaffar Profile Photo
      Gulrukh Jaffar

      I have been suffering from soherbic dermatitis since puberty and have lost my 90% hair.I have made a shampoo with 5% sulphur and 5% Camphor and it seems to be working

      Reply
  4. MA Profile Photo
    MA

    It just sucks how ambiguous all literature concerning link between SD and hair loss is. I mean, why doubt the link when almost everyone having SD also develop hairless – moderate to severe. Instead of sending a patient to 1000 different types of doctors who would anyway conclude they cant confirm the REAL reason of hairless, one should rather focus on fighting SD if it’s clear that the hairless started from the point of contracting SD.

    Reply
  5. Black US XY Profile Photo
    Black US XY

    Good site Michael, i love how you delved so deep into all of this information to build this haven for us, people in need, looking out for answers.
    I have no doubt you are one of the greatest contributors in the scientific field to the understanding of Seborrheic Dermatitis.

    About hair loss, i don’t have it in my hair, though some years ago (i have SD for about 10/11/12 years) i noticed a bit of thinning in my lower frontal hair line, above the sideburn area. But i do not even care about this, because it is not “proper hairloss”, i do have though this strange thinning of my body and facial hair, i noticed first my mustache growing slower, after that i noticed it vanishing and thinning in some areas, now i have this uneven, patchy, not complete beard.

    The doctor said it was Alopecia Areata (she made no lab tests), but i don’t think so, because of the pattern, i don’t have circular areas or whatsoever anywhere over my body, just a diffuse thin hair. This hair loss never responded to minoxidil, neither to diet change, never went away, never relocated the area (like in alopecia suffers), haven’t responded to a bit o steroids i applied near my sideburns, nothing seemed to help, i never found anything about this, seems like i’m the only in the world with this strange (very likely not, but the information is scarce), strange, strange beard/body hair loss/thinning.

    About the DS, i have quit 1 month ago the usage of topical steroids, Clobetasol Propionate (ultra potent class), and cleaned my diet even futher (something i’ve been doing for many years), it’s too early to tell, but it seems like i’m getting better, and i will do no other thing than look for my diet/exercise in 2017, after that if i don’t have a remission, i will look for supplements, 2018, and if it doesn’t work, i can try something locally over my face, 2019. That way i can understand better how everything works, easy to say i will do this, hard to follow through this, i hope that i have the strength, and come back to tell (if i remember and follow my word) what i find.

    Reply
  6. Matthew Profile Photo
    Matthew

    I was diagnosed with Seborrheic dermatitis but I was treating it with daily washing for years without using antidandruff shampoos. This kept flakes away but didnt solve the problem. My hair thinned a lot. I had an episode of extreme stress last year which led to increased symptoms and eventual diagnosis of seborrheic dermatitis. Learning now that it may have contributed to my thinning and shedding, is the hair lost over the years reversible too or just the recent hair loss that occured just before using antidandruff shampoo? Also, is it safe to use Nizoral and other shampoos and conditioners or is mixing unsafe (either the same day or on in-between treatment days)? Thank you for the help. I appreciate this so much.

    Reply
    • CC Profile Photo
      CC

      My doctors recommended I use various medicated shampoos after the zinc pyrithione shampoo I had been using for years seemed to stop being effective. I now alternate between four different medicated shampoo types each time I wash my hair. I think the best treatment is to wash your hair with a medicated shampoo at least 4-5 times a week for moderate SD or daily for severe SD. I also think working on managing/lowering stress is key to helping control SD and its potential causes.

      Reply
  7. Steve Profile Photo
    Steve

    Great article, Michael! Your research is always top notch.

    Any specific findings or insights on eyebrow hair?

    Reply
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    […] One of the biggest benefits of pyrithione zinc for many of it’s users is the fact that it may also help restore hair growth (source). And this fact, has been discussed in greater detail in a previous post: Reversing Seborrheic Dermatitis and Hair Loss. […]