What is Psoriasis Shampoo?
Scalp psoriasis is a form of psoriasis that appears on the scalp, hairline, and even the ears. Psoriasis is an autoimmune skin condition that involves the immune system attacking healthy skin cells, which results in an overproduction of skin cells. This leaves flaky, dry, red, and inflamed patches on the scalp. There are many different things that can bring on a flare-up of scalp psoriasis, including stress, injury to the skin, an inflammatory diet, and even alcohol intake.
As a skin condition that tends to often be hidden under the hair, scalp psoriasis can be quite tricky to treat. The person dealing with scalp psoriasis may often be left with greasy and uncomfortable hair thanks to the variety of topical ointments used to treat the psoriasis. But there is another option to try if you are dealing with scalp psoriasis — psoriasis shampoo.
What Does Psoriasis Shampoo Do?
Psoriasis shampoos are designed to help relieve the symptoms of scalp psoriasis quickly and effectively. They help to reduce any itching, redness, or scaling caused by scalp psoriasis. They do this by infusing specific ingredients into the shampoo that can have anti-inflammatory properties.
One of the good things about psoriasis shampoo is the amount of choice there is out there today. Once upon a time you may have been limited to what was offered at your local pharmacist, but these days, there are many small businesses that are experimenting with different natural psoriasis shampoos. As with all psoriasis treatments, you may need to give a few a go to find one that works for you.
Psoriasis Shampoo Ingredients
A common psoriasis shampoo option is one that contains coal tar. Coal tar in shampoo can help relieve the symptoms of scalp psoriasis but can also help to slow the overproduction of the skin cells at the same time.
Depending on the severity of the scalp psoriasis flare-up, there are higher and lower concentrations of coal tar in shampoos to suit different needs. For less severe psoriasis, try a lower concentration first. Coal tar shampoos also have quite a strong smell that can be polarizing. Some people love it, others hate it. You’ll need to try it for yourself to see how you feel about the smell, which can linger on your hair after you wash it.
Salicylic acid in psoriasis shampoo is known to help remove the dead skin (or skin cells) from your scalp. A downside to this sort of shampoo is that they could cause your scalp to dry out a bit as well. It’s worth testing on a small section of your scalp to see how it will affect you.
Coconut oil in shampoo helps to moisturize your skin while cleansing the hair. If you find a shampoo with coconut oil, be sure to check the other ingredients to make sure there is not something that may irritate your scalp psoriasis that may be found in regular shampoo, like lauryl, retinoic, or cetyl alcohol to name a few.
Ketoconazole is used in shampoo to treat scalp issues that could be referred to as fungal. It also has been found to help psoriasis sufferers by reducing the appearance and painfulness of dry skin.
Clobetasol propionate psoriasis shampoos can be quite strong. It helps to reduce the pain and itching associated with psoriasis. This type of shampoo generally asks the user to apply it to dry hair, not wet hair. For this treatment, it is wise to discuss with your doctor before you try it, as it is quite potent.
Zinc pyrithione is another ingredient in psoriasis shampoo (and dandruff shampoo) that has been found to help reduce the overproduction of skin cells.
How to Use Psoriasis Shampoo
Most standard non-psoriasis shampoos ask you to leave your conditioner in for three minutes. With psoriasis shampoo, you will need to leave it in for up to 15 minutes before you rinse it out. You’ll also need to be gentle with your scalp when you are applying the shampoo. Try not to scratch your skin as abrasions on the scalp can cause a flare-up to last longer. Also, be sure to check whether you are to apply the shampoo you use to dry or wet hair. Some will ask you to apply it to dry hair.
Although it is safe to use psoriasis shampoo every day, check your specific shampoo’s instructions and see if you can leave a couple of days between washes so you do not irritate your scalp too much. This break between washes can also help your skin to heal and recover a bit faster. Over washing may cause further irritation.
Confidence and Recovery
Psoriasis shampoo is a fantastic option to explore as an easy way to integrate less intense psoriasis treatment into your daily routine. Often, psoriasis shampoos can still leave your hair feeling clean and in good condition, which is great for your confidence. In less extreme cases, no longer will you need to deal with greasy hair after applying topical steroids to your scalp. Wash your hair with psoriasis shampoo on a schedule that works for you and help reduce the intensity of flare-ups.