Categories: Hair Health & Care2.7 min read

By: Anderson Center for Hair


5 Myths About Dandruff

If you struggle with dandruff, rest assured – you are not alone. In fact, approximately 50% of the general adult population is affected by dandruff. Thanks to the itchy, embarrassing, and overall frustrating effects of dandruff, many people go to the internet for answers. However, if there’s anything you should know as a 21st-century adult, it’s that not everything you read is true – and that theme is just as applicable in the world of dandruff as it is with even more controversial topics. So keep reading to learn the five biggest myths about dandruff and why you shouldn’t believe them.

Myth #1: Dandruff is linked to hair loss.

Hair loss can be a result of a combination of things, including:

  • Heredity
  • Stress
  • Age
  • Medical conditions
  • Medications
  • Hormonal changes

…but not dandruff! While it is possible for excessive, prolonged itching over time to cause scarring to the skin of your scalp, it’s uncommon for the damage to be so severe as to cause significant hair loss from these injured hair follicles.

Myth #2: Dandruff and dry scalp are the same things.

Though they have similar symptoms, dandruff and dry scalp are not the same things. Dandruff usually consists of large, oily flakes that are yellow or white, an itchy scalp, and oily, red, scaly skin. On the other hand, a dry scalp usually consists of smaller, dry flakes, an itchy scalp, and dry skin on other parts of the body. You can try to use a gentle, moisturizing shampoo, but if the issue persists, we recommend going to see a dermatologist so they can properly diagnose and treat your scalp.

Myth #3: All flakes are dandruff.

There are many other conditions besides dandruff and dry skin that could lead to a flaky scalp, including Seborrheic dermatitis, psoriasis, skin lesions, contact dermatitis, weather changes, ringworm, and more. These conditions have different symptoms and should be checked out by a doctor. Again, we recommend visiting your dermatologist to confirm a diagnosis and method of treatment.

Myth #4: Dandruff is contagious.

There are a few reasons you might get dandruff, but getting too close to others is not one of them. You can’t catch dandruff from someone or pass it on to anyone else. Causes for dandruff may include:

  • Oily skin
  • Not shampooing enough
  • Yeast that causes excessive skin cell growth
  • Contact dermatitis (sensitivity to products)

Myth #5: Oil treatments are the cure.

Given that oily skin is a primary cause of dandruff, adding extra oil to your scalp could actually perpetuate the problem instead of fixing it. The key is to find a good middle ground. For example, investing in a gentle, moisturizing shampoo could help apply moisture to your hair without making it too oily. Keep in mind that everyone’s scalp is different and may require a different treatment method.

Don’t Struggle Alone

Now that we’ve ruled out dandruff as a cause of hair loss, you may be asking yourself, “Well, if dandruff isn’t causing my hair loss, what is?” Don’t just wonder… schedule a consultation today to meet with a doctor who can confirm the root cause and help you understand your options to prevent future loss and opportunities for restoration.