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Advice For Itchy, Flakey Scalp


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22 replies to this topic

#1 lilfrenchie

 
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Posted 19 February 2009 - 06:05 PM

HElp!!

I am not sure if this is gluten related or not, but for the past year or so I have had the worst scalp. Itchy, flaky, almost "soft" in a way. I can run my finger nail on it and a bunch of skin comes off. Not your regular dandriff. I am a recent celiac dx, within the past 6 months and am compliant with the diet as much as possible.

I am using scalp benefits shampoo/conditioner from aveda and have made sure my hair products (of which I use few of) are gluten free.

Has anyone else experienced this? I was hoping when I was dx that this would help it clear up my scalp, too, but now it has been months later and to no avail.

I just went to get my hair cut and the girl said that I even have scabs on my head because I itch it too much. YUCK!!! This is an embarrasing problem. I don't think it is DH but am not sure. I have been to a derm who just told me to put on some foam steroid but that didn't work very well.

What can give me relief? Any suggestions? I am dying to get this to go away for good! Think coconut oil rubbed into scalp would help?
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#2 lovegrov

 
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Posted 21 February 2009 - 08:20 AM

Sounds like possible psoriasis. You may need to see a dermatologist, but I also use T-Gel plus.

richard
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#3 Mother of Jibril

 
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Posted 21 February 2009 - 08:42 AM

I agree that psoriasis is a possibility. Seborrheic dermatitis and candida overgrowth can also cause flaking, but (as far as I know) these other conditions are not itchy. They also respond to different treatments (like anti-fungal shampoo). Psoriasis is itchy because your skin cells are turning over very rapidly... every few days instead of once a month. The flakes are the dead skin cells.

I've had terrible flakiness for about ten years! Hairdressers ALWAYS try to sell me products :( Right now I'm using a prescription zinc shampoo and taking zinc supplements. It seems to be helping... the flakes are greatly reduced. No more flakes on my pillows and clothes.
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Son has IgE allergies to peanuts and corn
Hashimoto's, MCAD, pregnancy loss at 17 weeks
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Extensive family history of autoimmune disorders and related symptoms

#4 Sailing Girl

 
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Posted 21 February 2009 - 12:10 PM

HElp!!

I am not sure if this is gluten related or not, but for the past year or so I have had the worst scalp. Itchy, flaky, almost "soft" in a way. I can run my finger nail on it and a bunch of skin comes off. Not your regular dandriff. I am a recent celiac dx, within the past 6 months and am compliant with the diet as much as possible.

I am using scalp benefits shampoo/conditioner from aveda and have made sure my hair products (of which I use few of) are gluten free.

Has anyone else experienced this? I was hoping when I was dx that this would help it clear up my scalp, too, but now it has been months later and to no avail.

I just went to get my hair cut and the girl said that I even have scabs on my head because I itch it too much. YUCK!!! This is an embarrasing problem. I don't think it is DH but am not sure. I have been to a derm who just told me to put on some foam steroid but that didn't work very well.

What can give me relief? Any suggestions? I am dying to get this to go away for good! Think coconut oil rubbed into scalp would help?


Hi LilFrenchie,

I used to have the same exact problem, right down to the scabs from scratching too much. I couldn't wear anything dark in color or I'd look like I'd been out in the snow! I tried virtually every shampoo on the market, and none of them helped (plus some of them smelled so medicine-y that I could hardly stand to be around myself!).

I never did get "the horrible dandruff" diagnosed (I'm not big on doctors), but it was one of the things that lessened *significantly* when I first went gluten-free. I was mostly (but not completely) gluten-free for several years and it would come and go, generally coming back three days after gluten ingestion and lasting about two days.

Now that I'm obsessively gluten-free (no gluten-based vinegars or alcohol, no gluten-containing hair products, no processed foods, no grains, practically no restaurant meals, etc. etc.), it's GONE, and doesn't seem to come back even with CC.

I don't know how long you've been gluten-free, but if a dermatologist visit doesn't help, maybe it just needs more time to resolve. Good luck with it!
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#5 Amber M

 
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Posted 21 February 2009 - 04:15 PM

HElp!!

I am not sure if this is gluten related or not, but for the past year or so I have had the worst scalp. Itchy, flaky, almost "soft" in a way. I can run my finger nail on it and a bunch of skin comes off. Not your regular dandriff. I am a recent celiac dx, within the past 6 months and am compliant with the diet as much as possible.

I am using scalp benefits shampoo/conditioner from aveda and have made sure my hair products (of which I use few of) are gluten free.

Has anyone else experienced this? I was hoping when I was dx that this would help it clear up my scalp, too, but now it has been months later and to no avail.

I just went to get my hair cut and the girl said that I even have scabs on my head because I itch it too much. YUCK!!! This is an embarrasing problem. I don't think it is DH but am not sure. I have been to a derm who just told me to put on some foam steroid but that didn't work very well.

What can give me relief? Any suggestions? I am dying to get this to go away for good! Think coconut oil rubbed into scalp would help?

What shakes me up here is the fact that you say,"and am compliant with the diet AS MUCH AS POSSIBLE." Sounds like you are not 100% gluten free......My scalp cleared with 100% gluten free. I also heard zinc helps, but you need to read the daily recommended amount, because it can be toxic if you get too much. Are you totally gluten free? And, could you be having "Cross Reactivity" with other foods?
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Amber Martin
Gluten Free since Mid July 2008 (except a few slips)
Soy Free for over 30 years, Corn free Jan. 2009
Allergic to Clams, legumes, Soy, Pine Pollen
Still can't digest all grains (except brown rice), processed sugar
Gene Test: HLA-DQB1-Allele 1 0301
HLA-DQB1-Allele 2 0603 (genes from both parents)
Serologic equivalent HLA-DQ 3,1 (subtype 7,6)
Imulogical Gluten Sensitivity
Gluten Ataxia
Tested negative for Celiac on Blood Test after being gluten free
Tested negative for Celiac on Single Biopsy-upper intest. after being gluten free for 3 months
Candida

#6 mushroom

 
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Posted 21 February 2009 - 06:08 PM

What shakes me up here is the fact that you say,"and am compliant with the diet AS MUCH AS POSSIBLE." Sounds like you are not 100% gluten free......My scalp cleared with 100% gluten free. I also heard zinc helps, but you need to read the daily recommended amount, because it can be toxic if you get too much. Are you totally gluten free? And, could you be having "Cross Reactivity" with other foods?

I am 100% gluten free and my scalp is worse than ever!! :(
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Neroli


"Everything that can be counted does not necessarily count; everything that counts cannot necessarily be counted." - Albert Einstein

"Life is not weathering the storm; it is learning to dance in the rain"

"Whatever the question, the answer is always chocolate." Nigella Lawson

------------

Caffeine free 1973
Lactose free 1990
(Mis)diagnosed IBS, fibromyalgia '80's and '90's
Diagnosed psoriatic arthritis 2004
Self-diagnosed gluten intolerant, gluten-free Nov. 2007
Soy free March 2008
Nightshade free Feb 2009
Citric acid free June 2009
Potato starch free July 2009
(Totally) corn free Nov. 2009
Legume free March 2010
Now tolerant of lactose

Celiac.com - Celiac Disease Board Moderator

#7 lonewolf

 
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Posted 21 February 2009 - 11:53 PM

I have the same problem with my scalp. I have psoriasis. I am fanatically gluten-free and have been for several years. I'm not sure what to do either. No shampoo works well - even T-gel doesn't work anymore. The only time that my scalp (and skin) has ever been completely clear was when I was on large doses of prednisone. That was the only "good" side effect of it and I would never take prednisone just to clear my scalp/skin. One other time I was off dairy, eggs, soy, peanuts, red meat, nightshades and citrus fruits and my scalp and skin were pretty good.

I'm trying to eliminate ALL dairy and might eliminate eggs and maybe red meat again. I still avoid soy. I just started taking oil of oregano twice a day and bought some cod liver oil to take. Sometimes I rub olive oil into my scalp at night and sleep with it on. It relieves a little itching and dryness, but doesn't work as well as I hoped it would.

Good luck! If you find anything that helps please post it!
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Liz

Started Specific Carbohydrate Diet on 8-16-09 because son was diagnosed with Ulcerative Colitis and want to give him moral support.

Diagnosed with Minimal Change Nephrotic Syndrome in 2003. Discovered that going completely gluten-free put me in remission.

I would have despaired unless I had believed that I would see the goodness of the Lord in the land of the living. Psalms 27:13

#8 mushroom

 
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Posted 22 February 2009 - 01:15 AM

I have the same problem with my scalp. I have psoriasis. I am fanatically gluten-free and have been for several years. I'm not sure what to do either. No shampoo works well - even T-gel doesn't work anymore. The only time that my scalp (and skin) has ever been completely clear was when I was on large doses of prednisone. That was the only "good" side effect of it and I would never take prednisone just to clear my scalp/skin. One other time I was off dairy, eggs, soy, peanuts, red meat, nightshades and citrus fruits and my scalp and skin were pretty good.

I'm trying to eliminate ALL dairy and might eliminate eggs and maybe red meat again. I still avoid soy. I just started taking oil of oregano twice a day and bought some cod liver oil to take. Sometimes I rub olive oil into my scalp at night and sleep with it on. It relieves a little itching and dryness, but doesn't work as well as I hoped it would.

Good luck! If you find anything that helps please post it!

Hi Lonewolf: It is reassuring to know I am not alone. I have tried all the remedies, from zinc to T-gel to Dovonex, all the Rx shampoos, eucalyptus, tea tree. Have never tried prednisone because I do not tolerate it at all. I started off with dandruff as a kid, progressed to seborrhea and then to psoriasis, initially only small patches, then whole scalp, in my ears too (as well, of course, as all the mentionable and unmentionable places.) I think I am being punished. Back before I knew what psoriasis was Dh and I used to see these commercials on TV (can't remember the product being advertised for the life of me) talking about "the heartbreak of psoriasis" (don't know if they still do those any more. ) Anyway, we used to make mocking fun of "the HEARTBREAK of psoriasis". Well now I am experiencing it :lol:

I am soy free and nightshade free, don't do lactose but do do other dairy and eggs. Do you really think these things might make a difference?? And the nuts, red meat and citrus?? I would have to eliminate 75% more of my recipes! if I did that and would be really dietary challenged :(
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Neroli


"Everything that can be counted does not necessarily count; everything that counts cannot necessarily be counted." - Albert Einstein

"Life is not weathering the storm; it is learning to dance in the rain"

"Whatever the question, the answer is always chocolate." Nigella Lawson

------------

Caffeine free 1973
Lactose free 1990
(Mis)diagnosed IBS, fibromyalgia '80's and '90's
Diagnosed psoriatic arthritis 2004
Self-diagnosed gluten intolerant, gluten-free Nov. 2007
Soy free March 2008
Nightshade free Feb 2009
Citric acid free June 2009
Potato starch free July 2009
(Totally) corn free Nov. 2009
Legume free March 2010
Now tolerant of lactose

Celiac.com - Celiac Disease Board Moderator

#9 Amber M

 
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Posted 22 February 2009 - 06:52 AM

Hi Lonewolf: It is reassuring to know I am not alone. I have tried all the remedies, from zinc to T-gel to Dovonex, all the Rx shampoos, eucalyptus, tea tree. Have never tried prednisone because I do not tolerate it at all. I started off with dandruff as a kid, progressed to seborrhea and then to psoriasis, initially only small patches, then whole scalp, in my ears too (as well, of course, as all the mentionable and unmentionable places.) I think I am being punished. Back before I knew what psoriasis was Dh and I used to see these commercials on TV (can't remember the product being advertised for the life of me) talking about "the heartbreak of psoriasis" (don't know if they still do those any more. ) Anyway, we used to make mocking fun of "the HEARTBREAK of psoriasis". Well now I am experiencing it :lol:

I am soy free and nightshade free, don't do lactose but do do other dairy and eggs. Do you really think these things might make a difference?? And the nuts, red meat and citrus?? I would have to eliminate 75% more of my recipes! if I did that and would be really dietary challenged :(

I am eliminating one thing at a time and if I don't get better, then the next. But I notice a few of you are not 100% gluten free. Good luck, I know how hard it is!
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Amber Martin
Gluten Free since Mid July 2008 (except a few slips)
Soy Free for over 30 years, Corn free Jan. 2009
Allergic to Clams, legumes, Soy, Pine Pollen
Still can't digest all grains (except brown rice), processed sugar
Gene Test: HLA-DQB1-Allele 1 0301
HLA-DQB1-Allele 2 0603 (genes from both parents)
Serologic equivalent HLA-DQ 3,1 (subtype 7,6)
Imulogical Gluten Sensitivity
Gluten Ataxia
Tested negative for Celiac on Blood Test after being gluten free
Tested negative for Celiac on Single Biopsy-upper intest. after being gluten free for 3 months
Candida

#10 mushroom

 
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Posted 22 February 2009 - 11:33 AM

I am eliminating one thing at a time and if I don't get better, then the next. But I notice a few of you are not 100% gluten free. Good luck, I know how hard it is!

Well, I have eliminated gluten, soy, corn, lactose, nightshades and all my digestive problems have gone away. The intractable problems are RA and psoriasis, the other auto-immune things brought on by gluten. I have just started Humira injections to calm down the inflammation still raging through my body. I just was (self) diagnosed too late to be able to arrest those, I believe. (Age 69, gluten free 15 months.)
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Neroli


"Everything that can be counted does not necessarily count; everything that counts cannot necessarily be counted." - Albert Einstein

"Life is not weathering the storm; it is learning to dance in the rain"

"Whatever the question, the answer is always chocolate." Nigella Lawson

------------

Caffeine free 1973
Lactose free 1990
(Mis)diagnosed IBS, fibromyalgia '80's and '90's
Diagnosed psoriatic arthritis 2004
Self-diagnosed gluten intolerant, gluten-free Nov. 2007
Soy free March 2008
Nightshade free Feb 2009
Citric acid free June 2009
Potato starch free July 2009
(Totally) corn free Nov. 2009
Legume free March 2010
Now tolerant of lactose

Celiac.com - Celiac Disease Board Moderator

#11 Amber M

 
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Posted 22 February 2009 - 04:19 PM

Well, I have eliminated gluten, soy, corn, lactose, nightshades and all my digestive problems have gone away. The intractable problems are RA and psoriasis, the other auto-immune things brought on by gluten. I have just started Humira injections to calm down the inflammation still raging through my body. I just was (self) diagnosed too late to be able to arrest those, I believe. (Age 69, gluten free 15 months.)

That's why I am afraid my neurological problems are not going to completely go away. This dizzy feeling of falling all of the time and the facial and body twitches and numbess as well as visual disturbances just drives me insane. I don't go far from home. My social life is suffering. I do have a few good days here and there, and will be completely corn free as soon as my new supplements come. So far I'm gluten, soy, corn, yeast, lugume (allergies) free, and cut back to almost no nightshades. ( a few potatoes here and there, usually one per week.)

I started years ago with some of my symptoms and I wonder if I have permanent nerve damage. I have read that it takes a few years sometimes, so I will not loose hope! I realize I may have to give up more yet.
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Amber Martin
Gluten Free since Mid July 2008 (except a few slips)
Soy Free for over 30 years, Corn free Jan. 2009
Allergic to Clams, legumes, Soy, Pine Pollen
Still can't digest all grains (except brown rice), processed sugar
Gene Test: HLA-DQB1-Allele 1 0301
HLA-DQB1-Allele 2 0603 (genes from both parents)
Serologic equivalent HLA-DQ 3,1 (subtype 7,6)
Imulogical Gluten Sensitivity
Gluten Ataxia
Tested negative for Celiac on Blood Test after being gluten free
Tested negative for Celiac on Single Biopsy-upper intest. after being gluten free for 3 months
Candida

#12 lonewolf

 
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Posted 22 February 2009 - 09:11 PM

Hi Lonewolf: It is reassuring to know I am not alone. I have tried all the remedies, from zinc to T-gel to Dovonex, all the Rx shampoos, eucalyptus, tea tree. Have never tried prednisone because I do not tolerate it at all. I started off with dandruff as a kid, progressed to seborrhea and then to psoriasis, initially only small patches, then whole scalp, in my ears too (as well, of course, as all the mentionable and unmentionable places.) I think I am being punished. Back before I knew what psoriasis was Dh and I used to see these commercials on TV (can't remember the product being advertised for the life of me) talking about "the heartbreak of psoriasis" (don't know if they still do those any more. ) Anyway, we used to make mocking fun of "the HEARTBREAK of psoriasis". Well now I am experiencing it :lol:

I am soy free and nightshade free, don't do lactose but do do other dairy and eggs. Do you really think these things might make a difference?? And the nuts, red meat and citrus?? I would have to eliminate 75% more of my recipes! if I did that and would be really dietary challenged :(


I remember the "heartbreak of psoriasis" commercials too. Didn't understand at the time what they meant.

I eliminated all of the above mentioned foods because I had horrible arthritis and was desperate to have some relief. I had an ELISA food allergy panel done and I showed reactions to a LOT of foods. For a whole year all I ate was fish, rice, some fruits and some vegetables and sunflower seeds. The arthritis went completely away and the psoriasis was almost completely gone. As I added foods back the psoriasis (and horrible dandruff) came back.

I still avoid gluten (fanatically), soy and most dairy, although I cheat with the dairy too much. I also don't eat much red meat. I think that all dairy, not just lactose, isn't good for psoriasis or arthritis. You might want to eliminate all dairy and see if that helps with your arthritis.

Several years ago I tried to challenge gluten, soy and dairy with disastrous results. My joints started aching, psoriasis got way worse and digestive problems came back, and I developed a kidney problem. I cut out all gluten, soy and dairy again and everything got better except for the psoriasis/dandruff.

I'm trying oil of oregano because I've read that there can be a relationship between strep infections and psoriasis. I used to have chronic tonsillitis and strep throat as a college student and wonder if there are some lingering strep germs somewhere inside. I'm also trying cod liver oil because it's a healthy fat and can't hurt with the dryness.
  • 0
Liz

Started Specific Carbohydrate Diet on 8-16-09 because son was diagnosed with Ulcerative Colitis and want to give him moral support.

Diagnosed with Minimal Change Nephrotic Syndrome in 2003. Discovered that going completely gluten-free put me in remission.

I would have despaired unless I had believed that I would see the goodness of the Lord in the land of the living. Psalms 27:13

#13 Amber M

 
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Posted 23 February 2009 - 07:29 AM

I remember the "heartbreak of psoriasis" commercials too. Didn't understand at the time what they meant.

I eliminated all of the above mentioned foods because I had horrible arthritis and was desperate to have some relief. I had an ELISA food allergy panel done and I showed reactions to a LOT of foods. For a whole year all I ate was fish, rice, some fruits and some vegetables and sunflower seeds. The arthritis went completely away and the psoriasis was almost completely gone. As I added foods back the psoriasis (and horrible dandruff) came back.

I still avoid gluten (fanatically), soy and most dairy, although I cheat with the dairy too much. I also don't eat much red meat. I think that all dairy, not just lactose, isn't good for psoriasis or arthritis. You might want to eliminate all dairy and see if that helps with your arthritis.

Several years ago I tried to challenge gluten, soy and dairy with disastrous results. My joints started aching, psoriasis got way worse and digestive problems came back, and I developed a kidney problem. I cut out all gluten, soy and dairy again and everything got better except for the psoriasis/dandruff.

I'm trying oil of oregano because I've read that there can be a relationship between strep infections and psoriasis. I used to have chronic tonsillitis and strep throat as a college student and wonder if there are some lingering strep germs somewhere inside. I'm also trying cod liver oil because it's a healthy fat and can't hurt with the dryness.

Have you tried "Oil Pulling?" It is suppose to help all of our conditions. Check it out on Google.
I have been doing it for 6 weeks and seeing some results.
  • 0
Amber Martin
Gluten Free since Mid July 2008 (except a few slips)
Soy Free for over 30 years, Corn free Jan. 2009
Allergic to Clams, legumes, Soy, Pine Pollen
Still can't digest all grains (except brown rice), processed sugar
Gene Test: HLA-DQB1-Allele 1 0301
HLA-DQB1-Allele 2 0603 (genes from both parents)
Serologic equivalent HLA-DQ 3,1 (subtype 7,6)
Imulogical Gluten Sensitivity
Gluten Ataxia
Tested negative for Celiac on Blood Test after being gluten free
Tested negative for Celiac on Single Biopsy-upper intest. after being gluten free for 3 months
Candida

#14 FruitarianGirl

 
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Posted 27 February 2009 - 02:50 PM

I have heard that Manuka honey works wonders for Lupus scalp rashes which are similar.

Manuka honey reduces inflamation and kills bacteria, fungus and parasites. It is actually used in surgery in New Zealand. Apparently it kills micro-organisms by sticking to them and removing the moisture from them until they die. Therefore, it is effective on bacteria that is resistant to medication. It penetrates deep into the tissues and is so anti-inflamatory that if you have a swollen joint, for example, it will absorb throught the skin and target the swelling deep within.

Try Comvita 100% Active Manuka Honey New Zealand Wound Management UMF 18+. It's on Amazon (search by "Comvita Wound Care"). They also have their own site (combvita.com). For more information about Manuka Honey watch this youtube video: or see the website manukahoneyusa.com.

If you use coconut oil, be sure to use virgin coconut oil. The best I know of is Tropical Traditions (tropicaltraditions.com). On their website they also provide information about virgin coconut oil in general. Virgin coconut oil is another miracle food that is anti-bacterial, anti-fungal, anti-parasitic and anti-inflammatory. To find it on amazon search by "tropical traditions 16 oz gold label"
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#15 C.S. Blogsmith

 
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Posted 04 March 2009 - 12:14 PM

Have you tried "Oil Pulling?" It is suppose to help all of our conditions. Check it out on Google.
I have been doing it for 6 weeks and seeing some results.


Oil pulling has worked really well for my skin problems. A large portion of my body (including my scalp) was covered with a blistery rash (that appears to autoimmune related). It started healing immediately after I started oil pulling.
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