Scientists aren’t completely sure why dandruff exists, but it remains a nuisance for millions of people every day. Apparently caused by an immune system’s overreaction to a common fungus, dandruff is white dead skin cells flaking off your scalp. The result can be itchy, uncomfortable and embarrassing. No one wants to be the person whose collar is covered in dandruff - gross.

And stressful situations can even make it worse, which means the more worried you are about your dandruff, the more you may be aggravating the situation. Luckily you’re not completely at the mercy of this skin condition. There are several steps you can take to treat and reduce your dandruff. Using a combination of natural and medicinal solutions as well as altering some of your hair care habits can make a world of difference.

  1. Find a good dandruff shampoo

Although it may not be a complete panacea, dandruff shampoos with active ingredients like salicylic acid, zinc pyrithione and ketoconazole can help exfoliate dead skin cells in the shower, remove excess bacteria and treat inflammation that may be aggravating your dandruff. Although a strong shampoo can strip your hair of essential oils, a well-formulated dandruff shampoo will strike a balance. Be sure to invest in a deep conditioner to restore your hair’s shininess afterwards.

  1. Use natural solutions like tea tree oil

Tea tree oil is a powerful astringent that can help clean your scalp and remove excess bacteria, yeast and fungus that may be irritating your scalp and causing the flaky itchiness. Use diluted tea tree oil - undiluted oil should never touch your skin - and massage it into your scalp.

You can also look for dandruff shampoos or conditioners that have tea tree oil as one of the ingredients which can help you get rid of dandruff. In addition to being an astringent, tea tree oil also a powerful antiseptic, antibacterial and antifungal ingredient, making it perfect for killing multiple birds with one stone.

  1. Cut down on how frequently you wash

Overwashing your hair can leave it dried out, and a dried out scalp will flake and itch more readily than an oiled scalp. It may also be more susceptible to developing excess bacteria that cause dandruff. You can try cutting down on how frequently you wash your hair to help restore the natural amount of oils in your scalp. It may be uncomfortable for the first few weeks, but after your hair adjusts to a schedule of washing only once or twice a week, you’ll find your dandruff significantly alleviated.

  1. Use a clean towel to dry your hair

Using a dirty or still-damp towel can reintroduce old bacteria and fungus back into your scalp, effectively counteracting the effects of your shower. When you wash your hair and step out of the shower, make sure you opt for a clean and dry towel to dry your hair. If necessary, keep a pack of clean hair towels available, separate from your regular towels, in order to prevent yourself from reusing a used towel on your hair.

  1. Brush your hair regularly

Another effective way to keep your scalp moisturized and keep dandruff away is incorporating a thorough brushing routine into your hair care. Brushing your hair can stimulate natural oils, and distributes them evenly through your hair, leaving it shiny and healthy. But it also provides natural exfoliation for your scalp, reducing the buildup of dandruff and the subsequent itchiness that comes with oil buildups. Try to do this after you wash and dry your hair, but before you go to bed.

Dandruff can be difficult to deal with, but it doesn’t have to be the bane of your existence. With regular, thoughtful treatment, you can cut back on the itchiness and flakiness, stop leaving the house covered in white dust and get a grip on your scalp health.

Author's Bio: 

Jeremiah Owyang is an internetet entrepreneur and investor interested in the internet of things.