Seborrheic dermatitis can become a chronic problem in many people. There is no cure for the condition. It usually improves with treatment but may recur after stopping treatment. Hence it is important to take measures to prevent it.
Tips to prevent seborrheic dermatitis
Use over-the-counter medicated shampoos regularly: Maintain good skin and hair hygiene at home. Seborrheic dermatitis on scalp and body may flare-up after treatment if you do not wash your hair frequently, especially if you have an oily scalp. Washing hair infrequently (once or twice a week) increases the risk of developing seborrheic dermatitis of scalp.
Care after treatment of seborrheic dermatitis includes regular use of over-the-counter medicated shampoos. You can use any medicated shampoo which contains one or more of the following ingredients.
Wash your hair regularly or frequently or even daily if you have an oily scalp during flares to control seborrhea and after the symptoms are in control, wash your hair once a week with a medicated shampoo. But continue to use any non-medicated shampoo to wash hair frequently (daily or on alternate days) when you have no symptoms. Besides the scalp wash other affected areas such as the ears, face, and chest as well with the therapeutic shampoo. Relapse of symptoms in many people with seborrehic dermatitis can be prevented by regular use of medicated shampoo.
Avoid oily cosmetics: Use of oily skin products, oiling hair heavily can cause recurrence of symptoms; hence use of oily cosmetics should be avoided. Besides this, do not use closely fitted hats, caps, head wraps, or helmets.
Seborrhea of eyelashes: If you have seborrhoea on eyelids (eye brows) use a gentle baby shampoo to scrub the lashes and then wash them with water. Regular scrubbing and washing can control the symptoms.
"Cradle cap" in babies: It is not caused because of poor hygiene or allergy. It is not possible to prevent cradle cap and in most cases it improves in a few weeks to months even without treatment. However, if your baby has bad cradle cap consult a paediatrician or dermatologist for treatment. Washing the scalp frequently with a mild baby shampoo after applying oil to soften the scales can help the scales to clear more rapidly. If the flakes are thick and stuck firmly on scalp use a soft toothbrush dipped in warm olive oil to gently massage and remove some of the flakes daily or every other day. Do not scrub or aggressively rub as it can damage the soft and tender scalp skin.