Monday, January 14, 2008

What is dandruff?

Dandruff is a condition of excessive scaliness of the scalp. There are two varieties - dry and greasy. In the dry variety, the scales are fine, thin, white or greyish, and dry or slightly greasy. Such type of hair lacks lusture. People with this type of hair will have mild to moderate itching. The scales will fall freely on the shoulders.

This dandruff will be more common in winter than in summer. It signifies exaggeration of normal exfoliation of the horny layer of the epidermis, It usually affects people with dry integument and scalp. Such people are rather reluctant to use oil, on their scalp. In the greasy variety both the scalp and the integument are oily. It diffuses all over the scalp. Later the condition also extends to other hairy regions. It may extend typically to the eyebrows, eyelids, beard and other regions. The basic defect in this case is over production and/or change in composition of the sebaceous secretion. Dandruff is common at puberty and it occurs due to endocrine disorders, familial predisposition, unbalanced diet and constipation. Effective treatments for these conditions are prescribed, in siddha medicine, based on commonly available plant products.