What causes Seborrheic Dermatitis?

What causes Seborrheic Dermatitis?
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What causes Seborrheic Dermatitis

What is Seborrheic Dermatitis?

Seborrheic dermatitis is a kind of fungal disease that occurs in skin areas rich in oil-producing (sebaceous) glands. It is a common, chronic and relapsing form of eczema that is typically characterized by red, itchy, scaly and flaky skin. It causes an eczema-type outbreak majorly affecting portions of the scalp, face and upper torso. Seborrheic dermatitis is also termed as seborrhea and is commonly associated with psoriasis. In case of infants, it is referred to as cradle cap.

What Causes and Symptoms of Seborrheic Dermatitis?

Researchers are still investigating what causes Seborrheic Dermatitis. From what they have acquired, it signifies that the cause is complex. Many factors seem to work together to cause seborrheic dermatitis.

Although, the exact cause for the skin condition is not known, the following factors may trigger the skin condition:

  • A yeast known as malassezia that normally found on the skin surface
  • Our genes
  • Inflammatory response generated against psoriasis
  • Allergic reaction related to specific medications
  • Cold and dry climate (seasonal changes)
  • Stress
  • Person’s overall health

By studying seborrheic dermatitis, researchers came up with the following:

  • It is not caused by poor personal hygiene.
  • It is not an allergy.
  • It does not harm the body.

The symptoms of the skin ailment are commonly diagnosed in newborn babies, adults aged between 30 and 60 and people with oily skin. ‘Dandruff’ is an uninflamed type of Seborrheic Dermatitis that affects the scalp and other areas of the body like face, upper chest and back. ‘Cradle crap’ triggers symptoms like crusty yellow or brown scales on the scalp of infants aged 3 months or younger.

Precautionary Measures to Control Seborrheic Dermatitis:

How to control Seborrheic Dermatitis

More often, the condition lasts for a prolonged period of time or may clear and flare again.  Good skin care is the key component that can help control the symptoms of seborrheic dermatitis from aggravating.

Adults affected by the dermatitis can alleviate the symptoms by making use of topical antifungal medications prescribed by the dermatologist. In case, their scalp carries dandruff, they can manage it by using medicated anti-dandruff shampoos that contains one of these key ingredients:

In addition, azoles have turned out to be the most beneficiary class of antifungals deployed to date for treating seborrhea.

For infants with cradle cap, it is highly recommended that their scalp is washed with baby shampoo on a daily basis using warm water. If no significant results are provided using the method, consult your pediatrician about medicated shampoos prior to adopting a new one. A dandruff shampoo can be harsh for the baby’s scalp and could irritate it. Application of mineral oil on the scalp can help soften the thick patches. Once, properly massaged, gently brush the scalp with a baby hairbrush to strip off the scales.

Natural Remedies For Seborrheic Dermatitis:


You may be able to control Seborrheic dermatitis with some lifestyle changes and natural home remedies. Many of these are available in the form of over-the-counter or nonprescription medications. You might try different products or a combination of products before your condition improves.

The best proposal depends on your skin type, the severity of your condition, and whether your symptoms impacts your scalp or other areas of your body.

Home remedies for seborrheic dermatitis:

The following over-the-counter treatments and self-care tips can help you control and manage seborrheic dermatitis:

  • Soften and eliminate scales from your hair.
  • Wash your skin regularly.
  • Apply a normal corticosteroid cream.
  • Get rid of products that contain alcohol.
  • Wear smooth-textured cotton clothing.
  • If you have a beard or mustache, consider shaving it off.
  • Clean your eyelids gently.
  • Gently wash your baby’s scalp.


Proper medical intervention alongside the natural remedies for eczema can help alleviate the symptoms of eczema.

Also Read

5 Proven Natural Remedies For Seborrheic Dermatitis

Yeast and Seborrheic Dermatitis

Weeping Eczema – 9 Home Remedies That Really Work

9 Home Remedies to Control Eczema Symptoms & Prevent Flare-ups



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