PDA

View Full Version : suddenly itchy and burning scalp?



sumptuousness
December 31st, 2009, 04:19 PM
Hello, I very often read the wonderful advice posted on here and have learnt stacks of very useful information over the last year or so, and have so far been very lucky in having no real problems or queries regarding my hair (just quietly and happily, though not so speedily, growing away).

That is, up until this evening when, all of a sudden, my scalp began to itch. I gave it a bit of a massage to see if it would help but it just got worse and stang and sort of burned, so I put some coconut oil mixed with a couple of drops of tea tree oil on my scalp to see if it would help. In fact, I ended up putting gobs and gobs of coconut oil on because the cooling sensation was such a relief, but as I sit here in the oiliest state my head has ever known, my scalp is still itching & burning just the same as before.

I wondered if anyone else had experienced this sudden itching/burning phenomenon and what they had done to relieve it. Hopefully someone might be able to help :pray: as it is very uncomfortable and peculiar!

Thanks in advance

sumptuousness
December 31st, 2009, 04:31 PM
<deleted content which was identical to original post>
<I've also merged the threads, but thought I'd leave this so no one is confused. I found the other thread on New Start Here. No problems>

ps this is my first new thread here - I've no idea where I posted it the first time :o but it didn't show up on the mane forum when I looked, so hopefully I'm posting it in the right place now

Eboshi
December 31st, 2009, 04:49 PM
Sounds like this could be an allergic reaction of some sort. What sort of products do you use on your hair? Have you recently colored or permed your hair?

Anje
December 31st, 2009, 05:47 PM
I haven't experienced the suddenly itchy scalp, but I think the first thing to do is try to figure out the cause. Have you tried putting anything new on it, started a new product? Eaten anything unusual? Gone unusually long without washing? Does it look red or irritated?

If you're a few days out from washing, a good sulfate scrub might be enough to fix the problem. Otherwise, I'm wondering whether you're having some sort of allergic reaction. You might get the best relief from smearing your scalp with hydrocortisone and/or taking some diphenhydramine/Benedryl.

For less acute scalp problems, a lot of people find that a good diluted vinegar rinse after every wash really helps. I'm not sure if that'll do the trick for something that came on suddenly, and if you've been scratching, it might burn. Finally, I think there's an article by Gothic Lolita about making a concentrated salt brine to apply to itchy scalps. (ETA: Link. (http://forums.longhaircommunity.com/vbjournal.php?do=article&articleid=46)) I don't know whether that would help and it might be hard on your hair, but it's another option to consider.

sumptuousness
December 31st, 2009, 06:16 PM
Hello Anje, thank you so much for replying :flower:.

Well, I did a cassia treatment about a week ago with no ill effects (have used the same batch before and all has been well with it). Since then, have shampooed and conditioned with the same products I normally use, so no real clues there... also, it has been 3 days since my last wash, which is very average for me.

I had a look at my scalp as best I could see (what with all the coconut oil, lol) and was surprised that it didn't look at all red, as it definitely feels like it should, as it's very raw feeling.

Diet-wise, I did eat prawns today, which my mother is allergic to, and which I don't eat often, but I can't imagine any allergy manifesting itself in my scalp rather than digestive system...

I think I will sleep with the coconut oil, wash it out in the morning, and see what my scalp has to say for itself after that! Then I will definitely consider vinegar rinses and all other suggestions after that.

Many thanks for all your help :)

sumptuousness
December 31st, 2009, 07:00 PM
Hello Eboshi, I now see your reply, thanks to the merging of my two simultaneous threads (woops:o, and thank you teacherbear!).

I definitely agree that it seems to be some kind of allergy, judging by the suddenness of it, and by the fact that my scalp is ordinarily very happy.

The products I use are very diluted sulphate shampoo and a coney conditioner (I have tried alternatives since becoming an avid reader here but find my current routine gives me the most reliable and pleasing results).

I don't perm or colour my hair, but do use cassia and occasional henna glosses. The only hair-based thing I have done differently in the last few days is mix honey with my conditioner, but this was away from my scalp, plus I use neat honey quite happily on my face and have had no problems.

The more I think about it, the more I suspect I may have eaten something odd that triggered it, only I'm not sure what it would have been (or quite how it could have affected my normally-happy scalp in such an adverse way?!)...

I have just shampooed my hair in case I had inadvertently had contact with an irritant, so hopefully it will settle down now.

Thank you very much for your help :)

Konstifik
January 1st, 2010, 05:31 AM
Oh, I have been wrestling with the same problem this whole winter so far! I think my case is related to the cold, dry climate. But no sure.
No visible, red signs on my scalp, but yet so incredibly itchy. Do you have certain spots that itch more than the rest of the scalp too?

I've tried lots of different anti-itching cures, including cortisone. It helps temporarily. I too usually washed about once or twice a week, but now almost daily, since it relieves the itching for a while.
I'm sorry that I don't have any real answers to what it is or how to cure it, but at least cortisne on the most itchy spots and more frequent washings has relieved it for me. Lush's scalp treatment Snakeoil also helped a bit.

I hope it will work out for you! :flower:

Chibbylick
January 1st, 2010, 05:58 AM
I think this could easily be a reaction to the shellfish. My Dad has shell fish allergy, and describes an itching crawling burning sensation. He's quite balding, and I have seen his scalp flush and sweat with a reaction to chillies also. I'd try an anti-hystamine, and avoid shellfish in the future, as the reaction could be worse next time.
Chibby

sumptuousness
January 1st, 2010, 08:13 AM
Thank you for your replies :flower:

My scalp is feeling alot better today. Though still slightly itchy, it is nowhere near as sore as it was yesterday. Scrubbing with sulphate shampoo lastnight seemed to help, but, shellfish theory aside (which is very plausable and which I will definitely have to keep an eye on) I have a suspicion that it may actually be stress related.

I say this because when I woke up this morning, my scalp felt entirely normal, happy and fine. But when I remembered how it had been lastnight (and the stressful situation that immediately preceeded it) it began to itch again?! Apparently this is a fairly common phenomenon, so I will be keeping an eye on stress levels.

I think I will also continue to put coconut oil and tea tree oil on my scalp before washing as it was quite soothing (plus I agree that the winter can be quite harsh on the scalp), and I just got some apple cider vinegar for diluted rinses and hopefully that will help too.

Thanks again for all your help, and happy new year! :cheese:

Konstifik
January 1st, 2010, 08:59 AM
Thank you for your replies :flower:

My scalp is feeling alot better today. Though still slightly itchy, it is nowhere near as sore as it was yesterday. Scrubbing with sulphate shampoo lastnight seemed to help, but, shellfish theory aside (which is very plausable and which I will definitely have to keep an eye on) I have a suspicion that it may actually be stress related.

I say this because when I woke up this morning, my scalp felt entirely normal, happy and fine. But when I remembered how it had been lastnight (and the stressful situation that immediately preceeded it) it began to itch again?! Apparently this is a fairly common phenomenon, so I will be keeping an eye on stress levels.

I think I will also continue to put coconut oil and tea tree oil on my scalp before washing as it was quite soothing (plus I agree that the winter can be quite harsh on the scalp), and I just got some apple cider vinegar for diluted rinses and hopefully that will help too.

Thanks again for all your help, and happy new year! :cheese:


Good luck, and happy new year to you to! :flower:

LaurelSpring
January 1st, 2010, 09:10 AM
I went through this. It was miserable. I couldnt figure out what the problem was for the longest time. For me it turned out to be anything acidic on my hair. I was using vinegar rinses at the time and had to stop. I cant use lemon either. If I use any shampoo that has citric acid in it my scalp gets really itchy also. I switched to catnip rinses. I can tolerate some sls and chemicals in moderate amounts but have to rely moslty on all natural shampoo. Shampoo bars are ok. Lately I have trying to make my own. I seem to do ok with most conditioners in general but the acid really got to me. Try to backtrack and see what different things you have been using to see if you can pin it down.

Beloved
January 2nd, 2010, 02:56 AM
Glad you;re feeling better!:)

When I eat shrimp my skin burns and I get a rash. It's very common for allergies, from food to antibiotic allergies, to manifest in the skin. I bet that's what you had.

sumptuousness
January 2nd, 2010, 07:41 AM
Yes, in hindsight, when my mother eats shellfish the allergic reaction is mainly noticeable in the skin (though not so much scalp as far as I know).

This is a shame, as I have only in the last year plucked up the courage to eat prawns and was rather liking them! Never mind; I'm sure I won't be alone here in putting hair first... After all, a prawn-free life is a small price to pay for a happy scalp :)

I wish any other sufferers of the itchy/burning scalp all the best with tracking down the cause and alleviating it, as I now know how horrid it is :blossom:

Beloved
January 2nd, 2010, 08:41 AM
ah, it was the same for me with shrimp. I just found out how amazing they were on a trip to Africa. I ate shrimp that were like succulent pink clouds. I had shrimp salad, shrimp pizza....

I came back to the US, had it two more times and realized I'm quite allergic.

30isthenewblack
January 2nd, 2010, 08:56 AM
I'm glad you're feeling better Sumptuousness and welcome to the boards! I was feeling a bit worried when I saw this one but didn't have any advice to offer.